Erich Michaels



There’s a cardboard box

On a metal shelf

Outside my office

Ordinary in every way

The box is not mine

It’s contents no concern

In this place

Where I traded sticky floors

For asbestos walls

It is just a box

Written in black sharpie

Four simple digits

The number 4101

However, it is a burdock

My mind a shaggy sweater

On my days off

I have be found mouthing the number




I was unaware I mouthed the number

Until someone pointed it out

Asking, what it was that I was saying

I had no idea

The number was a virus

My head the empty horse it hides in

Creeping out of my mouth

To lay siege to my home life

I started paying attention

But at the moment I recognized

That I was about to almost say it

It scurried back to the recesses

I told my…

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