Threadbare - Ben Jiang

An old Seamstress walks on the cold winter streets.

She offers to take your old clothes, coats, or sheets,

Your scarves or your hats, gloves or socks too,

To rework their cloth into something brand new.


She’ll knit, stitch and weave for as long as she needs,

Working in patterns and pockets and beads,

Patching and sewing the tatters and threads,

Until your old clothing is no longer dead.


She’ll gift them to you on a cold winter’s night,

Your newly-made clothes, crisp, clean, and bright.

Beauty has bloomed where there used to be holes,

And warmth has returned to comfort your soul.


An aging man walks on the cold winter streets.

He sees the old Seamstress and all of her feats,

But pulls his coat tighter, afraid of the chance

Of losing his warmth to her kind, outstretched hands.


His coat is tattered, filled with holes, rips, and frays,

And certainly seems to have seen better days.

He proudly clings to it, though threadbare and grim,

For it holds his memories, and memories of him.


The Seamstress approaches, and offers her hand,

As she takes great pity on this poor old man.

But he is too stubborn! So she must sit by

As his old coat unravels, withers, and dies.

The old man keeps walking, refusing to see

His beaten old coat that was ceasing to be.

He grabs for the threads, as they float away.

The Seamstress just patiently watches and prays.


She gathers the threads, saving every last one,

Ready to make a new coat once she’s done,

But he holds too dearly, clings ever so tight,

To scraps of his past, with all of his might.


An old Seamstress walks through the cold winter night,

Behind an old man who is dying of fright.

He clings all too dearly to his final thread,

Refusing to change ‘till he sleeps with the dead.

Written from “Unraveling”

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