you just have to begin.
you hold my hand
when I speak.
I am nervous inexplicably.
just existence is a trial.
count the candles.
set the rocks.
in my waking hours,
I practice walking across a lake
with black boots.
it’s an icy sidewalk on
a ledge but I pretend
that it’s a long pond.
have 13 visions of every way
he’s cut to pieces in front of
me, swallowed by the
ground.
when he first comes around,
I notice my wrist,
then my jaw,
surrender.
I have an urge to burn the
house down first
but in a long quaver,
forget the nonsense:
the counting of the pulse,
the spotty mason jars,
my blood dripping on a red
throw blanket, laundry,
my childhood–effete,
mold speckled shingles,
my sullen dead father
and his one last breath
alone,we think
sometime after midnight.

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