apart

winter-worn bark clutched my skin

the trunk cast a shadow
in the treehouse
where I clasped your hand
quiet fingers laced
beyond their line of sight

my hands shook
mint leaves into teacups
fluttering, sifting, forgotten
in those early hours when we were
the most crystalline versions of ourselves

the newsprint meant to wrap your dishes
became my handkerchief
smearing headlines across my cheeks
after the apoptosis took hold
shuttling blood away from our hearts

what I remember now are the
stars burned and scarred into your shoulders
the smooth swish-dub swish-dub
of a heart’s murmur, leaking ventricles,
your eyes flicking to mine in the rearview mirror
an earnest, infectious smile
the clouds dancing on strings above us

before the hawks came to circle

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