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Happy Feast of Saint Stephen

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Today, December 26th, is that famous day of the year when Good King Wenceslaus looked down. Yes, folks, it's the Feast of St. Stephen, the first Christian to ever get stoned.

It's been a long time for me, but I am named after the patron saint of mind altering substances.  I gave up alcohol over ten years ago because of a family history of using too much of it.  It killed my father.

So really that leaves only the illegal stuff, or I suppose prescription pharmaceuticals, but when you ain't got none you ain't got none.



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My name is Steven; I guess I was named after someone else.



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The Feast of Stephen
Anthony Hecht


The coltish horseplay of the locker room,
Moist with the steam of the tiled shower stalls,
With shameless blends of civet, musk and sweat,
Loud with the cap-gun snapping of wet towels
Under the steel-ribbed cages of bare bulbs,
In some such setting of thick basement pipes
And janitorial realities
Boys for the first time frankly eye each other,
Inspect each others' bodies at close range,
And what they see is not so much another
As a strange, possible version of themselves,
And all the sparring dance, adrenal life,
Tense, jubilant nimbleness, is but a vague,
Busy, unfocused ballet of self-love.


If the heart has its reasons, perhaps the body
Has its own lumbering sort of carnal spirit,
Felt in the tingling bruises of collision,
And known to captains as esprit de corps.
What is this brisk fraternity of timing,
Pivot and lobbing arc, or indirection,
Mens sana in men's sauna, in the flush
Of health and toilets, private and corporal glee,
These fleet caroms, pli

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