By: Lee Harris
Photo Credit: Creative Commons
the knot in your esophagus grows
with each set of open-faced fists
scratching at the bare places of your neck.
like fitting square pegs
into a circle cut out
and nodding off the excess amount of force
as growing pains.
but it’s more than just pain.
it’s living at the bottom
of your own lungs,
because you simply can.
you simply could.
escaping the pitter-patters
of each individual tap
on your forehead
by subconsciously stopping your own heartbeat.
if only for a moment.
it’s like trying to shock life
back into a corpse
just to watch it choke on its tongue.
who knows if they were thanking you
or cursing you.
but life and fatal wounds
cancel each other out.
much like those late
given after meetings with foggy men
wearing black cloaks
carrying out the dead weight you keep
hidden underneath your breastplate.
sting of feeling your face turn blue,
as you hand off necessities,
those smaller than the breath of a child,
based on the decision
that anyone who can see in front of them
then you feel
the snap of bones
before the shadows in an over-active
become real people.
before they have names.
each introduction to empty silhouettes
is white noise picked up from the
receiver at the top of your head.
like wiping your sweaty palms
on your pants
before a firm handshake,
because they will not
these are the “just-in-case”
and the “if’s”
that have become facts.
a foot-trail traveled by a slim few,
but very, very often.