Brother Keeper

by Emily Ho

When my brother was one
he put a flashlight in his mouth
and lit up like E.T.

I put the flashlight to my chest
and it threw my rib cage on the wall
around my brother.

He wears me like a hat
like a streetlight wears a night.

Fingers up the glass
trying to pass through
but he’s no flashlight.

My mother tells him
wash the dishes
put the cat out
leave your sister alone.