Little Sister

You ask after him
if he’s discovered home in a cell yet
if he’s been found with a rope around his neck yet
if he’s added any new scars to his riddled body
if he’s still taking his medication

You ask after him
not wanting
to know how bad he’s doing
to know the results of his fourth car crash
to be told about his latest failures
to receive any reply at all

You ask after him,
breath held,
as you are told
his heart is still beating.
Thank god, thank god,
that’s good enough for now.