When the Undead Get Old – A poem.

Children play zombie,
shamble and shriek.
They break character often.
Run and giggle—
“You’re dead if I touch you!”
At least they aren’t biting.
Stumble, feet trip like laces
tied, or mimic their father,
too much to drink.
Boys try to touch girls
and moan. The girls moan.
Later, the sounds are different—
they don’t play zombie.
Skin to skin they explore,
reach beyond where they were told.
Shamble through halls, bag slung
over sunken shoulders.
They look like zombies.
Nights spent with drink,
or books—each other. Moan.
Degrees earned. Time to work
to live. Stumble through
mountains of paper
they can’t climb. No time
for play. Wrinkled,
like the money they stuffed
into pockets and bank accounts.
On the porch, with whiskey or bourbon,
they watch their own shamble and shriek.
Children play zombie.


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