The best poem I have ever written. It earned me my first ‘A’ at Cal-Berkeley.


My Favorite Shirt

There is no such thing

as a too large T-shirt.


My bully brother pushed it off on me

for my eighth birthday.

A cruel joke to him, it hung down to my knees.

I wished it was longer.


And when the wind blew

it flopped and trailed behind me

like a little sister.

I imagined I was a kite,

playing tag with the clouds.


I balled it into a pillow

when the heavy August heat

talked me into napping

under the maple tree.


It dried me off as I scurried

from the keepers of the golf course pond,

range balls stuffed in my pockets.


It caught the ice creams and root beers

that jumped out of my hand

when Chris tickled me

or Jenny smiled my way.


I took it to show-and-tell

when school left the summer behind.

Miss Akins was not impressed,

even though she wore the same skirt

for three straight weeks.


When winter came

I hid it away from the attic-bound clothes.

It absorbed the icicle sweat

under five layers of snow gear.


I wore it to the third grade Valentine dance,

along with brother’s leather shoes and dad’s Aqua Velva.

Jenny splashed it with punch

when I touched he chest.


By the time June closed the schools again

it was a shred of my past friend.

I carried it in my back pocket

that whole summer.