At Midnight

ciggarete_2

Daddy built a fort in the living

room out of cigarette ash and

empty beer bottles while I

kept busy sweeping up the soot.

 

I tasted it once, licked an

index finger and dragged it

across my salmon tongue

in the shape of a crucifix –

it was thick and earthy,

it hid between my teeth and

told me stories while I slept.

 

Mommy poured another glass

of iced tea on our front step and

exchanged gossip like rubies

with our next door neighbor.

 

I hopscotched over purple

crooked numbers on our

pavement, stared up at the

clouds that watched me overhead –

at six the streetlights would kick

on and I’d hide between their yellow

while I waited to be whistled inside.

 

At midnight I was in bed carving

holes in my mattress by moonlight:

one for the ash,

one for a bottle,

one for the rubies.

 

I smoothed down

the pink sheets and dreamed.

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4 Comments

Filed under Writing

4 responses to “At Midnight

  1. I very much enjoyed this. So many good lines but the “carving holes” stanza is the one that cinched the knot for me. Thanks for sharing

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