The Hall

She tells him he is paranoid
and brushes pencil shavings off the table
where he has been sitting all night,
with a knife, just making them sharper.
She likes to dry the flowers out,
so even though they’re dead
they still look pretty.
She’s like a mortician embalming corpses,
replacing their blood to preserve
the position and light of their faces.
He thinks he can hear
their neighbors whispering
about them through a lightning
shaped crack in the wall.
She runs her hand along the gap
then holds it against his tired face.
She sticks her thumb below his eye.
He wraps his arms around her thigh.
Beyond the fading plaster is the hall.

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