dormant details shaking sense

You open your eyes with foreign disorientation. Beside you is someone you loved a very long time ago. The fact that you loved them isn’t on your mind – it’s the way that you loved them.

You loved this person in a new way when they told you to never wear lipstick because ‘…your mouth is too beautiful to be covered with anything except for my lips.’

And when you kissed, it was like swallowing sky.

Trying to mask the way you gasp, your stomach tightens and rolls in unseen ways as you attempt to maintain… control. You lose sight of whether life is being drawn from you or replaced.

The city block you’re visiting is alive with determination. Suits rush past after currency; a Jamaican nanny zooms a young child to her piano lesson; the world is scented with sunflowers for sale outside the corner store.

Someone’s holding your hand. Unlike the loose-finger-hooked stipulation of floppy wrist assurances, this is a mastered grip. Your hand is being held like someone dangling you over a ledge to save you from falling.

There’s a place deep inside that wants them to let go. Being clenched this way terrifies you.

When you try to speak the sensation of burning your tongue assaults the attempt. Tears taste salty detouring across your bare lips prior to completing the fall.

Your companion looks at you with false purpose. You know they aren’t staying and turn your back. The stubble on uncertain cheeks brushes your shoulder blades. Words are spoken and unheard. Drown out from tepid breath that grows hotter with progress.

You don’t feel like you’re moving forward.

Beneath a tent of crisp, white sheets commitment is stated but not made. Vows along the lines of ‘It’s never been this way,’ sound cliché and turn your stomach. At 3am you silently slip out, because you refuse to spend the night with the only person that can hurt you. Sacrifice dreams…

Daybreak consistently brings a fresh set of hours to plan an escape.

The telephone is a brick in your hand as you dial a number you refuse to allow yourself to memorize. Words are spoken that you don’t mean but the freedom within the delivery is somehow inviting.

You’ve heard enough facile syllables, puddles of promises too shallow to splash in. You hang up.

In the distance a voice calls your name and you react with a headshake. Right. Left. Right.

‘What did you see?’ asks the man with the soothing voice. The same voice that put your best friend under the week before she said, ‘You should try it. Maybe being hypnotized will help with the addiction?’

‘I didn’t see anything,’ you say startled by your travels.

‘Dependency is never an easy thing to address,’ says the man. ‘A few more sessions… we’ll figure out what the cause is.’