I whisper her name aloud —
you tug at a chair to gather your coat,
pet the dog and say goodbye
before a question
kicks you in the tender groin.
Your eyelids curtsy once and clench —
a mirror of the coffin’s hinge.
I’d like to follow roads you take,
through briars of the fruitless vines,
down sharp, dry cliffs
that crumble at the slightest wind.
Our silence is my orphanage,
but you don’t know the windows
you have blocked from light.

Hand me just a sweater’s sleeve,
some syntax, context, anything
that spells the way she made the bed
into a novel packed with lust
and happiness now cherry pits.

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