construct

Published June 18, 2012 by April Fox

today was longer than the night before
(when, restless
he woke me to trade places with him:
“my head is too full of things,”
he said.
“i need to read for a while.”)
i don’t remember the resituating of ourselves-
if that’s even a word-
the crawling over or under, legs suddenly twenty feet long and multiplied
clumsy in my sluggish drawl
and his eagerness to settle
but i know that’s how it happened.

on the couch, some hours before that
we sat angled away from each other
heel to heel
toes prehensile, he said we were like monkeys
holding feet.

we’re magnetic, still
i said
and he agreed.

today the clock sped up, slowed down
spit its parts out at me, laughing mean and
cruel, sadistic
there is not enough for anything
that matters
far too much for things that make my face ache, make my head hurt
make me want to crawl between the racks of fabric
pull the velvet and the burlap and the brightly patterned cottons down
and cover me until
i am nothing but a pile
that no one sees.

and when the lights lit up the front porch i could see inside
through the slanted angles of the door
and my breath began again and i was inside
quiet words, my face against the hair
of the tiny girl
in her tiny room
growing up despite my silent
but sincere, futile objections

time is just a construct
but we are captive just the same
and quiet is the only
counterstrike that works.

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