by Arshia Kakkar 

my mother once asked

why I choose to wear the 

tasteless and tragic garments of those 

whom I do not know 

the seams tugging and heaving pleading 

as the buttons move into a two-bedroom cookie tin 

on the corner of Bathurst and College

the threads loosening

as they too retire to chamomile Sundays and oak Wednesdays 

for the coldest months anyway 

the lint pills away as well

for how long can you expect one to 

hold their head high 

when you prick them away 

time and time again 

I learned my lesson

and thus I am left with 

a cream cable-knit sweater

with ragged fleece and 

washed out memories

but they are mine 

for now anyway 

my mother once asked me 

why I wear the 


of those whom I do not know 

because if I could not belong to you 

then may I belong to them