everyone i love is in the same room and laughing

Mandy Seiner

if i could freeze this moment and put it in a tiny box

i would carry that box in the front pocket of my overalls forever.

my tiny overalls box would be made of beech wood

and have a tiny gold latch that clicks softly when it closes.

i would open it only for complete strangers on the subway

who look like they might know the answers to all of my questions.

i wouldn’t make them answer any though, just hold my hand.

i want every stranger i meet to tell me their favorite tree.

mine is the one with the loud red flowers just past the South Street gate.

if you catch it in the right evening light, it looks like it’s on fire.

everyone i love is on fire, but in a good way.

i fall in love fifty-six times a day and that’s a conservative estimate.

i’m sorry, i just think that everyone’s eyelashes are so beautiful.

i have a no-good filter and the last time i got tipsy

i couldn’t stop saying “thank you” and “isn’t it wonderful?”

i think i am a product of circumstance. of who i am surrounded by.

everyone i love has fingertips like the edges of rose petals and when

they laugh all of the lightbulbs in all of the lamps in the world turn on.

believe me, I’ve seen it happen. a room full of light can be a family

if you make it one. we live in a house made of each other.

my best friend’s arms are the framework and my roommate’s

mop of morning hair is the roof, the only leak it lets in is the sunlight.

in leaks of sunlight, I could love everyone.

i wish I had pockets big enough to keep everyone I love in.

pockets that stretched to los angeles and taipei and glasgow and back.

but in the meantime i’ll keep everyone’s laughter in my tiny container.

open it for strangers on the subway. ask, “isn’t it wonderful?”






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Mandy Seiner (she/they) is a writer and educator from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the ketchup capital of the world. They earned their BFA in Poetry at Emerson College and currently work for the NYC Department of Education. They are the co-editor of DEAR Poetry Journal. Find them on twitter @still__mandy.