look, i’ll show you:
the scuff marks in the bamboo floor
the two chairs, empty, facing one another
the burgundy curtains drawn shut
the single light hung
two and one-half feet from the ceiling
the shadows cast
and then the words hidden in secret places
and then the fist clenched tight inside your chest
and then the insult of hoping.
i twist my right foot to hear bones crack.
it’s the only sound visiting this house tonight.
earlier, i walked barefoot against the war left behind:
returning, nothing changed but the time.