Nights I Dream of Things Not Living

Nights I dream about broken mirrors,

sex with a woman, eating my own flesh.

I read about my heart, I touch myself.

I look at the stars and try to remember

that they are dead. I am talking to myself again.

I make lists of things to do:

             1.) don’t kill yourself.

Nights I dream I open my mouth

and all of my teeth are falling out.

I go to your house, I want to give them

to you but you are not home. I dream

I am young again, hiding in a bathroom,

a bruise’s black wing

             spread across my cheeks.

I look for you—

across the water, I listen for you

inside seashells. I want to give you

             my hands.

Nights I dream I am my father,

petrified in sleep; a wolf's jaws

crystallizing around my brittle bones,

I wake up favoring a leg that has not

shattered yet, I wake up vomiting,

I wake up and count my teeth,

lick my wounds, always licking

             my wounds.

I bury my head

in the sand, but it doesn’t

help. I am practicing saying

             you are dead.

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