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the girl with love in her bonesHer lips are a smoky colorthe type of chapped things with paled, cracked edges and words hanging off, clothed by the least incessant whines and the most liberating cries. They're somewhat extended and exemplified through the cigarette in her moutha thin figure held between the sticks of her fingers with filtered lips of its own, ashing edge, a paled body, and a slow burning with every breath. The grayed portions fall off in a dirty, snow rubble on the sidewalk, burning into it, leaving small holes by her feet.
"I don't understand," I say.
She sighs, breath coming out white, warm in the icy air. "It's a human thing." Her eyes are red, raw around the skin, and her corneas glint blue above the thick smoke, like a cat'sexcept it wasn't darkness, but the exhaust of flameclouds before morning rain, the lights of a city blaring through the smog of night.
"I still don't understand."
"It's liberating," she says, and I can see her eyes on mine. Her nose is flushed red lik
SmokeYou smoked, and everyone hated that. The cigarette would hang loose between your knuckles, tendrils of smoke mimicking the tracery of veins and tendons that stood out along the back of your hand. You could do the most graceful French inhales, and sometimes you'd lean in close and grab me and kiss me, blowing warm smoke into my mouth. The scent would always cling to meI'd drag it back home with me and there would always be a fight over it.
You were sparrowlike, all taut pale skin and prominent bones. Your hipbones jutted slightlysharp elbows, sharp knees, a sharp jaw softened by cornsilk hair. When I ran my fingers down your back I could always feel every vertebra in your spine, a steel column anchoring you down. More smoke. More fights at home. You never belonged here and never would.
Lay back. Relax. Anythinganything you want. I'd close my eyes and forget to breathe because I knew you weren't mine. If anything, I was yours, a toy that trembled and kissed back.
A Bloody, Stupid Miracle The day we’d cured the human condition was the day I put a bullet through my head and didn’t die. It was also the day I realized how scared I actually was of death, and after hours of muscle ache from holding that gauze against my open skull, after the wound closed and everything went back to normal, I had myself a good old-fashioned brainstorm. How ironic.
But when summer came, everything had fallen to shit. The air scorched my skin and parched my tongue every time I took a breath. The sun glared down on a rapidly-collapsing world, full of the undying bastard children of cruelty and misfortune. What was one to do when their cells regenerated faster than they decomposed?
My feet hit the pavement, now littered with jagged bits of glass to snap at my toes, thoroughly baked by the blazing ball of bitter disdain high overhead. Today was worse than yesterday. Though I’d often wondered the purpose of it anymore, I
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