Engine screams break silences
like ice chips in a bucket
and all the flowers she stole
from the beds out in front
of the shoe store are dying
where they’re planted in the dirt.
She wears only my shirt
as she waters them and bothers them
with all her quiet questions.
I guess she isn’t that unthoughtful
about their time but she goes
on and on while nothing ever changes.
She arranges the furniture in my head
like how the metal hooks will move through
when I’m dead and they are trying
to piece together what could cause it all
to fall apart so perfect.
She has a picture of a shipyard on her hip
and every ship is named for someone
in her family who was held beneath the tide.
She keeps the windows wide and cherishes
the morning like it’s the only one
that’s guaranteed to happen,
and in a way she’s right.
She paints the walls without a plan
in the night by just the lantern light
and takes the smallest bites of every apple
that I leave her in the doorway.

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