The curse that’s wrapped around her, squeezing tight that slender waist. Vines constricting her breathing with sleepless nights offering nothing but regret. Smothered like a child and covered in bleach, the horrors of the past can never be left behind. Smiling through the pain she struggles, aching and lonely for someone who’ll help; for someone who’ll shine a light. Promise me this she says, and always be by my side. Promise me this she says, and never fall silent no matter what I do. Inside her mind, there resides the linguistics of her faith. Those around her can’t speak the symbols she offers, but the truth is there. The puzzle of her tomb mirrored in the sky and upon the cracked surface of her favourite frozen lake. In clouds she’s falling; a pillow of anxious dreams suffocating through a lack of oxygen. The maze of her childhood. The forgotten paintings of her sex hung in abandoned hallways. Beyond the velvet curtains, she’s eager for your touch. The abstraction of what became of her. To leave behind the realm of flesh and to disappear into imagination. It’s a journey she never intended to make, but nature failed her. It offered redemption, then went back on its word. Betrayed, she descended. She’s heavier than heaven. A mute icon of beauty. The remains of what she used to be buried in a field of apple trees. How different she is now, how distant and obscure. It rains in her heart. Only she never sinks to those darkened depths she faced before. This time, she’s found her soul, fragmented at first then put together piece by piece across the decades. Deadlights and starlight, glowing behind her eyes as she completes her rite of passage. On the end of a pier one summers day, she stands there looking out to sea as the endless blue sky stretches ever on. Her face hidden, I’m somewhere nearby, desperately trying to find her as the walls of reality break down. Moving in slow motion, time’s running out with every second until I spot her up ahead. Calling her name, she turns and meets my gaze. Only it’s too late, and she disperses into thin air leaving only a trace of herself behind. Approaching as her scent drifts to me in the breeze, I look down and find the rose on the wooden planks beneath my feet. Red and lonesome, crumbling yet beautiful, it’s her parting gift. In the eons of time and space, she’s waiting for me to discover her secrets as the storm of her passing rages on the horizon. Somewhere, somehow, she’s calling me back home.