i betray my lips with another year,
a giant crouched in a cake box and sweet with seconds;
again the fat of my hand thuds
into the grime of a summer school chalkboard,
mistaking my pulse for a tally mark. reborn mother mary,
forgive my head the roaming sundial,
the light squatting on my eyelids
and the shadow bent across my hangover.
treat this cure as a reparation,
a gaunt apology that waits grinning at the gates
to murmur, "i think we both know what comes next,"
and smooths my forehead with two pin-knuckled fingers.
i am tense to the last drop of dew.
every bone shatters upon impact.