I want to hear about your battle
in the forest,
he says.
Well it was a dream I had,
darling, I remind him.
yes but i want to hear about it
and record it, he is keeping
pace with me which impresses
me though I don’t let
him know that.
fine, but i want to use a
fake name.
to protect myself from the evil

he thinks i might be crazy
and i
enjoy this spectacle so i
say  anything at all to him
without giving it a single

ok, what else?
he is perhaps, more earnest
than I expected.

any time i tell a lie
we have to start the story
he laughs.
im serious.
there is a pause between
people that slices me
into tiny bits. it’s the gaze
of the pause I worry about.
I wish to crawl
inside them so they cannot see
why don’t you just not lie?
that little lie about choice.

you have to record everything i say
from beginning to end and ill tell
you every single thing i remember
about the episode
and all the dreams
and every interaction
and every intuitive thought coming
true, every spell and every
man but every time i tell a lie
you have to wait for me
to start at the beginning
and retell everything.

I would find out years
later that he only wanted
to listen to me talk.
I was real slow with it,
not just my accent but
my deliberation,
and that sometimes
he didn’t record anything I said. 

how will i know you are lying?
I will interrupt the game
and say ive been lying,
i hold my hands up for
effect,  but
i wont tell you when and then
we will start over.
i will tell the new story as I see fit.

i do not tell him
that  I don’t remember much
or think about it much at
all.  I do not tell
him that none of this means
anything to me. whether
I tell the story or not has no
bearing on me. I just one day
sit down and let him
record me, wondering
what I will say.
wondering if I do say their
wondering if I  am
in love. wondering
if I ever tell anyone I love
them again.

Ok,  he says.
I love him because he doesn’t
make me try. 

My name is Lilian,
I begin.
And I once saw the death of
a man that I loved and terrified
asked if it could be me instead.

  (I do not tell him this is the end)

“datura moon”

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