After “Red Delicious” by Maggie Smith
Because he was the oldest
he was always the one sent.
On errands, on long drives,
on long shifts into the night when the night sky was beautiful
despite how it also mirrored the chaos Adam would collapse into.
Like the way that first explosion rocked the night,
as it sucked away heat like the vacuum
of space consuming a star’s energy into the essence of nothingness.
Adam was the kind of guy you always wanted around,
until he wasn’t. Then you hated him
even after he died, not the death of a warrior or of the scorpion king
but of a climber who was on R&R, and had lunged for a precipice but misjudged
how much strength his hands contained.
Or maybe not.
May his memoir
never become an ode.
He climbed on,
persisting like the cold night in the foxhole that never seemed to cease.