It was his Twenty-Eighth Birthday

This poem is the saddest I have written so far. It is based upon a local newspaper article I had read right before I saw the Poetic Asides prompt. The prompt was Something out of Place (March 18, 2009). In this case it was someone.

It was his Twenty-Eighth Birthday

It was his twenty-eighth birthday.
He should have been found at his party—
laughing, joking, dancing, and opening presents.
He should have been hanging out with friends
and wolfing down an enormous piece of cake.
He was fearfully and wonderfully made.

It was his twenty-eighth birthday.
If he were in an alley, it should have
been behind his own home
He could have taken out the garbage or played
basketball with the neighborhood kids.
He was fearfully and wonderfully made.

It was his twenty-eighth birthday.
He should not have been shot, dismembered,
and left as garbage in a stranger’s alley
for anyone to find–
his shoe and sock protruding from the plastic bag.
He was fearfully and wonderfully made.

Sheryl Kay Oder

2 thoughts on “It was his Twenty-Eighth Birthday

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