Divide the dream into the fleshI don't think I protested until things changed in the dark and it became a contest. I don't think I fought back or struggled until I realized I was no longer getting enough air to sufficiently remain lucid, present in the tangle of limbs I was to sort through and straighten out. Hands gripping my ribcage, lifting me, crushing me. Wrists pinned. My mouth was dry, my eyes watered, my breath came in labored gasps but I couldn't speak. I couldn't say anything, couldn't cry out, couldn't stop it. Powerless, left without even that one word that stops every action immediately and without regret. Without that word I had to disengage from my body and wait them out. Without that word I had to go and find a place inside my head that I haven't been to in a very long time and I had to open up the shutters and sweep out the cobwebs and relight the fire in the fireplace. I stayed there so long I lost track of time and suddenly the air came rushing back and I was pulled out of my now-cozy, welcoming place. Shutters smashed and splintered against the clapboard and the fire blew out in the rush and I was back in the dark, in the pain, in the moment I left and I found the word just in the nick of time and I yelled it because I knew if they didn't hear me that one time, they would never hear me again.
Kaleidoscope and candle eyes
Empty winds scrape on the soul
But never stop to realize
This time the word uttered in panic brought regret trailing along by her fingers behind it. This time the word brought strong arms closing around me, then one removed, hand held out to stop the advance of time. Eyes raised in warning, a hush spilling from between rough lips connecting with the flaxen crown kept safely away from precisely where it was placed. Rage lashed out from a darker corner as if some terrible hunger had been awakened and with that same regret, it shrank away to nothing when the first light of the sun reached us, leaving behind the curls and kind eyes and logic I always think I know but don't. I haven't left the safer place, though, not when I can revolve like a little planet in the gravitational ring around the black-haired, vicious and passionate princess-keeper I have now.
And safer than I once thought.