‘SHADOW BOXING’ by Lewis Buxton

The boy fighting ghost // in his back garden will never know that his punches // have landed

In my poem. In the skin & bone of winter, // dressed in a string vest & cotton bottom shorts, //

he works the body of nothingness, // his gloves glancing off the cheekbone of air, // breaking

December’s icy jaw. He rests, // hands on thighs, trying to catch the breath // that keeps

Disappearing from his lungs. Does he think // about what he is punching? // is the swing enough?

The air resistance? // I write every jab and twitch, // reach out towards him, trying to catch

Something before it hits // the ground. Boys rarely know what // they are hitting, let alone why.

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