Only half of us remember sixteen –
smoky images of basements now lost,
and the cool, white backs of our hands crossed
out with black markers. We breathed in caffeine,
made sure to keep our hair bright and eyes glossed,
and only the half of us that feel the frost
from sixteen winters keep these memories clean.
We’re not sure how the other half forgot.
They must have gotten stuck in twenty-one,
or maybe during thirty, but they run
like hell from sixteen, from us who cannot
erase teenaged love or updos undone.
We don’t remember much, just sixteen some.