Axes, vertebrae to brick,
Shots of soaring anguish still
This beating heart, these
Trembling hands,
These seeping eyes that
Know no escape.

(How can she tell you that
"You can't do this" when
You so clearly already have?)

Stony faces, laughing through
Empty lungs, vacant stares poring over your
Bare features.

(Yet you're covered in so much of it.)

And when you have to,
So clearly must;
When duty defines the
Salvation of both your suffering,
How do you fail to disappoint?

(Murderous breaths that taste of regret,
Hurting more than these slices,
Dices of skin, of stone, of heart.)

Secured ropes may liberate
As well as cease,
A road you'd take for her
Deliverance
Far before your
Selfish own.

But maybe it will suffice.

(Because we're clinging to the short term.)

And her tears, though they break you,
Somehow they revitalize as well,
Make the man shimmer and fade away and
Reduce the agony to mere tingling in your nerves.

Let her swim for you and just concentrate on breathing.

(You're going to need all the air you can get.)