For days without end I washed the smoke from the bowl, the color of the sky trailing the color of the wind. The weather came and went like fortune's cat, quiet as a ghost, easy as the night. My hand crabbed along that aging paper, spider scrawl shuffling along the page. A spilled ritual of bone and toil, the stubborn ligaments and every twitch and tic. A promise so gracious and labored it seems it could only say something else. I whisper some dank periphery, some dash of secret toward this dearth of interest. The ragged graveyard of things unsaid, your skin touched by this gleeful breeze.
A long slow afternoon, and every one comes calling. Every stranger has stories to share, once they see see how much you're missing. Every shadow knows its ease comes spilling from the light. The sunlight left falls from the leaves in the trees. The day lingers off in a corner, the weight of heaven always felt in lash and absence. The unseen stars map out blind constellations. You stare out the window, blinded by the horizon. You close your eyes against this choice morsel. Warmed by the passage of sun down all these steps. Other stairs fall somewhere a little further out of sight.
Your name has changed the nature of my tongue, so burnt bitter, so chocolate dark. It weighs its absence along each spring and gear, the machine adrift in the breathing and the blood. There is no resolving these stains, these teeth marks and swallowed feathers. There is no ablution for this theft and hunger. Spoken soft, as if a secret. Spoken slowly, like it was a spell. The magic in the stitch that mends the wounding. The saying that portion I never see, your empire awake already.