ribs bend until sallow bone is
almost broken, the weight,
splinter, we had to.
lungs are oxygen inhaled, purity and
purpose, pleading capillaries—carmine red
and so rotten, so dead.
hands freeze, dry-ice. vaporous and vapid, the heat
released, the cold triumphant.
now, hearts are tobacco-black. it was
you who singed me, you who cringed and
it was I, who winced.