3:15 am

Rolling onto my side, I slip an arm beneath your body. You’re so far away, yet close enough for me to feel every heartbeat. In one tick of the bedside clock, your breath is upon my face, and then the next, the two of us are standing on a street we haven’t set foot on in years. There are fireworks in the sky, exploding like dying suns, and lovers just like us, pointing with beaming faces as the night comes to life like never before. Everything turns. All moments rustling in the leaves as the traffic in town passes like the sperm in my balls you tease out of me with such fever. The time is barely nine, and yet it’s also 3:15 am. A dog barks somewhere, and a future baby in your belly burps a false memory as the smoke from my cigarette caresses your tired limbs. The tears you cry stain the pillow—yours and mine. On the floorboards, among the dust, are the hairs on your head you left without meaning to. You left your scarf, too, which I sniff and stroke whenever I’m feeling lonely. On the scarf is an image of Winnie the Pooh. I get strange looks whenever I wear it, but I don’t mind. Not much bothers me. Only spiders and the fear that love might not be enough, or that if it is, it exists in another life, like my grandfather’s laugh or the look in your eyes when we danced outside with our bellies full of McDonald’s as the fireworks in the distance fell silent as minutes turned to hours, and hours made way for years.

X and I: A Novel and A Journal for Damned Lovers on Amazon UK

X and I: A Novel and A Journal for Damned Lovers on Amazon US

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