he wrapped his final smile
in a brown paper bag
wrinkled by the squeeze of his hand
wet with sweat
and yesterday’s tears

he knew
of course that there was
no smile
for his lips never knew that pleasure
stolen away
before he could know of such things

like ham and cheese on pumpernickel
the taste of his smile left him
empty
with nowhere to turn

while stepping from the curb
of yesterday’s memories
he wondered
if the wind would be especially kind
on this night

and if the ripple in his bag would help him
forget
those things
he never cared to know