VR brother

in game mode, we talk about girls.
he says he is waiting for perfect legs
& a jar of tongues.
really, i stand in the living room
knocking over glass vases.
shattering. meanwhile, in VR
i am just trying to hug him.
the headset sings a song about distances.
since he converted to digital
we have almost nothing
to say. i tell him it is raining
& he changes the sky to be purple &
heavy with clouds. he says, "what rain?"
this is not dreaming. this is
emptying each room on the front lawn.
i'm thinking about how we used to
talk through the dark
of our shared bedroom 
as if night were a curtain.
him asking, "are you still awake?"
me pausing before whispering, "yes."
i ask him what he does all day 
& he transforms his hand into a blue jay. 
in VR, nothing is perminant
but especially not mistakes.
he runs away & returns. he chops down
a tree out of anger & instantly 
it grows back. he says,
"don't you wish the rest of the world
was so forgiving?" a part of me does.
a part of me wants to burn
my house down & turn around
to see it back. but, then,
there are the pieces of a wreck.
how, even if they are ash, 
they should be taken. held.
he shaves his head. he eats with his fingers.
tells me he is in love with
a patch of dandelions. they are a woman.
again, we are talking about girls.
always, we are talking about girls.
the specter of me having been one.
how she is downloadable now.
lives on a USB drive. wonder if 
she's met anyone. when i take off the headset
he doesn't say goodbye just
"what if you stayed?" i think about it
until the moon is the only eye left open.
i think of putting my life
under my tongue. walking around
with blue jays for hands. sitting beside
my girlhood & putting a piece
of caramel in her mouth. 

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