your breath has a voice,
in its absence of sound.

it wraps its arms around
me, the way i need arms

to hold me. it whispers comfort,
but sometimes, just sometimes,

your breath isn't your breath;
its whispers aren't sweet, but

bitter, and its hands are rough—
no softness is felt on my skin;

yes, sometimes your breath is
a distant aftermath, a premonition

of displacement, a single traveler
left to remind me about something

i have forgotten.