That Dress, This Shirt

By Brian Patten

That dress won’t stop you growing older, no matter how you wear it —
Nor will this baggy shirt I wear disguise any more
A stomach growing fatter by the hour.
Now that we no longer have Time’s currency to squander,
Let’s get used to the raw material we are,
Let’s celebrate this far harder adventure
And stop carrying about the dead weight of Ago.
That dress, this shirt; we place them over chairs in rooms
Besides beds that set sail each night without expectation,
With us the crew, held together by love and by the faith
That we are buoyant enough to see any darkness through.

(From Brian Patten, Collected Love Poems)

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