covered in hot water & onslaught,
my throat suddenly opened
around 1 am.
I wanted to skin myself to get rid
of your fingerprints and view the collateral
damage but I didn’t want to be seen in public
either.
instead, I sat cross-legged
under the shower
for forty five minutes
to steam some of it out.
it was a waste of water,
you might have said.

I usually go to bed by nine pm
swathed in cheap sheets I picked up
from a trash can: moth-bitten
and low thread count and I washed them
but you’re right it’s a sense of self-deprivation
I wrap myself inside every night,
tortured by my low self worth,
absent flowers, cold feet,
lamp on next to me and
wax all over the unfinished table
you were making
before I threw the chair you had finished
down the stairs to get you to
open up.
here is what I need,
I might have screamed
but it ended in a soft bite to your
neck and a cloying kiss
you can tell has been rehearsed before.
it’s heavy;
my tongue flush with
little darted lullabies.

I’m up now and I
linger
in the hallway,
nothing in my hand,
wave in my throat
watching the front window,
voice hushed and brusque
and barely noticeable
when I finally move to speak,
to make a command on Earth,
withdrawn,
like low tide,
like you,

your sudden
retreat.

“February”

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