ten.

i
can’t
breathe

because my foot hurts so much—and sex is palliative
and i lost the piece of paper i need to pay my taxes—but i went out at dawn to retrieve it from the trash
and my children are sick—but getting better
and there are videos of masked terrorists about to behead prisoners in orange robes
while i sit at the cafe with two of my favorite men
making plans to bring my thirty year old dream of shadows and light
to life

– FLB

***

He’s afraid of the dark
But if I leave the lights on
He won’t sleep
His screaming breaks my chest open
He shoves apart my ribs
Grabs onto my heart
And squeezes it dry
His tears burn the side of my cheek
As I clutch him to me
And he pushes me away
Clawing at his own hair
Shaking
I research online if he could have a stroke
From the amount of crying I can’t prevent
He’s so tired
His eyes are bloodshot
Foggy
Wet
The vein in his forehead trembles
Right between his eyes
I try to hug him over and over
He hits me
I tell myself these characteristics
Will make him a successful man one day
Stubborn
Strong willed
Powerful
Relentless
Unyielding
Awake

– LB

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