FAO

by Jake Reynolds

Taken from the fridge, a child’s drawing
of a family holding hands
straw-haired, stick-armed, happy-faced
this is what we looked like

An old man’s collection of apple stickers
or faded ID labels
the Granny Smiths and Pink Ladies
this is what we were called

A sack of rusty copper coins
engraved with scripture
and the holy heads of our goddesses
this is what we treasured

The first tooth of a little girl
wrapped in tissue paper
enamel sharp as arrow-heads
this is what we fought with

An empty perfume bottle
fragrant, overbearing lilies
sweeter than cordial
this is what we drank

A blood-stained handkerchief,
our plea for resurrection
mistaken for a heartfelt token
this is how we loved

To whom it may concern,
the contents of this box
taken from one family,
should adequately express
who we were as humans

Successors of our world,
paint us as myths and legends
spilling love on our battlefields

Create a new history for us,
for the one we lived
was one we’d like to forget.