Blankets consisting of cigarette burns. Dyslexic intent as she crawls deformed at the foot of my bed. So real despite the dawn of time that knows no end as my hand slides up her delicate skirt. A handful of hair as she pushes herself against my hips, the moon appears through the window with a grin upon its useless, pale lips. It rains as my body rests on the bed lacking the energy to do anything but recover. In a field of lepers and dogs and cunts, the nature of my illness is nearby yet unseen as I break down for the fifteenth time. Life has taught me to keep quiet. They say to be honest. Yet the minute my mouth opens, I’m cut to pieces. So instead, I stalk the shadows where the lonely animals go at night. I’m one of them, not one of you. Lovers in gas masks. Bite marks and urinary infections. Passive darlings of modernity. Self-inflicted wounds as a car crash rolls into view on the corner of some other block. Sepia afternoons as she dreams of a world where love and loss weren’t so intrinsically linked. She’s not to blame it must be said, yet she brings it on herself. She seeks salvation in others when it must be found within. Throwing stones against old people’s homes. Setting fire to junk. They put razor blades in jelly and feed them to dogs. They brainwash the weak and make them become cogs in a machine that never ends. Precious they never feel. The touch of her skin forever doomed to keep you warm while everything else falls apart. White horses rushing through tired veins. Suck on a cigarette, and flow down the freeway. Rings on twisted fingers as you’re born again. Blind in torture. Memory my enemy. Flowers in my chest along with the devil and the aching sense of infinite loss. The kiss of another as the oceans wash our stained hearts. Stay close. Stay silent if you can. Be beautiful when everything else crumbles. Dream because you want it all. Love because love starves off defeat. Hold my hand, and follow me to a place they’ll never know.