looking back on a wasted life

we would stand
brazen in our
immortality of adolescence
smoking cigarettes
in the pool hall
listening to
heavy metal as we
pretended we were
bad ass adults
skipping school
to get high as we
raced to the store
to get the latest album
chasing the ladies
and getting hammered
every weekend
how little we knew
in the throes of
a teenage hivemind
where we thought
everything was
laid out before us
the world was ours
for the taking
unconcerned about
anything except escaping
the miseries we thought
to shed like scales
the moment we turned
eighteen and were
recognized as men
there was no
true understanding
we were on borrowed
time and freedom
the weight of the
coming responsibility
would shackle our wrists
if the cops didnt
manage to catch us first
chasing an endless
bounty of new experiences
before being saddled
with the same grind
that had ground all
traces of youth
from the parents
we were certain
we knew more than
smoking cigarettes
telling tall tales
expounding on the ways
we would do things
differently from
the hunched old men
until suddenly
we were those old men
looking back at all
the wasted time spent
unprepared for the
oncoming storms
now i look at the
weathered faces
the lines of laughter
and bonedeep sorrows
time has painted
showing me how wrong
we were about it all
we didnt change the world
it doesnt work that way
the world changes us
and living is still
the leading cause of death
as memories of the
immortality of adolescence
become just another
test we failed

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