residue

beginning of the month (one of twelve i dont' like) and we're lying on your sofa again, limbs intertwined, twisting and turning with every touch. and your breath haunts me, prickly on my skin like ice; her picture folded neatly in your back pocket. and you reach over me for the remote control, try to stop your fingertips from lingering, silently navigating the space between breaths. press rewind. you've watched the Scarlet Letter three times over now, still say she just wasn't careful enough. every femme fatale eventually meets her downfall- it's all in the name. so you collapse back on the sofa, finish my tuna sandwich and let your toes wander across the hollow of my stomach as i read the paper; black ink burning sweaty in my palms.

and i long to feel your kiss,
black on my cheek
(like sleet, midnight
ashes) because black
has no memory.

the morning light is harsh, illuminating, and we prefer the calm of night. because in this light our flesh bleeds to colour, skin cracking at the edges. and although we ignore the blood dripping from both our palms, we keep them raised- don't let it touch the floor.

for red, unlike black,
has the memory of any older sister.

and weeks later it still feels like a crime scene (you with your bread crumbs, me with my fingerprints) although we haven't spoken for days now and you've dusted the whole house three times over. so we hide the blood under pillow cases, carpets, lamp shades. seal it away in glass jars for safe keeping, buried in your backyard like dead goldfish or last year's petunias. and one day we'll unearth it all, blood spilling out over both of our hands.