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An Addiction Named Regret

Regret is worn like an old pair of jeans

comfortably and often.

What can be said of regret;

except that it slides over us like a misty haze,

distorting our image like a convex mirror,

unnoticed by our own eyes.

It smothers us like an oil spill,

ruinous to all it touches, the effects

spiraling outward like ripples from

a stone tossed into a calm pond.

Regret is the place where misplaced hopes go to die.

It is the cup of wilted dandelions that you placed

on the window sill hoping for the praise of your mother,

her bouquet to treasure. Only her response was to ash

her cigarette in the cup, muddying the water with black silt.

Regret smells like a summer day,

one spent near the local landfill out near the

city limits, out of sight but never out of reach of

a strong wind, wrinkled noses catch the hint,

hidden under a facade of happy occasions and

fake waves of the hand under mumbled breaths.

What can be said of regret?

It never fails to call to us when our plans go astray,

A shortcut that fails to reach the appointed destination;

it leads us astray, keeps our future out of sight, always

just around the next bend, where hope fades to black as

we wait in darker corners. Regret is the option of the fearful,

and hope lives in the hearts of the less cowardice.

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