There is a place deep underground
where there is no light nor sound
full of stars long dimmed and dead
gravity shattered, driving you mad
space within space, by blind hands found
Stars blossom between your teeth as you leave the last known place, entering the infinite amount of possible spaces to explore, chewing the last rations of sanity and security, floating as you swallow the last barrier of nervousness keeping you from cutting the tether
anchoring you to the last known star: one more burst from your pack and you will be
where no human has been, lived, breathed
as far as you know, at least,
and you stumble over the crumbs of your last meal of planet-bound lights, full yet hungry after feasting on familiar motions, round and round, the clockwork of a solar system gnawing on the bones of months and years, and then you spit out the rocks in your mouth to leave behind your mark in meteor streaks
as you go out into the dark
to nourish your curious soul.
I want to wrap myself in purple thunder, but the sky is empty, devoid of daisies and warm blankets of rainy sleep, lacking dreams of sweltering summer clouds hiding dusk and muffling the tearful eyes of crickets singing down the sun, ending the world in books eluding sleepers’ hands and slamming shut on floors of hard, baked soil; it’s all missing from void hollow streets of hollow noise, empty bustling in canyons of greyed houses and too much absence in the same space as too much presence, crammed with noise where there should be only the silencing force of a thunderstorm.
I didn’t open my eyes. It was raining so there would be ghosts, clinging in foggy whisps to the dull blades of grass, fragments of dreams dancing above the molehill graves in the backyard and thorns catching the edges of tattered cloth, tearing seams worn with centuries of dew and frost. I could smell them in the petrichor wafting in through the cracked wood of the window frame across the room, like burnt cinnamon and other spices whose names my tongue had almost forgotten, their syllables joining the spectres outside my chamber in their humid frolicking.
Lying still under threadbare blankets, piled on for warmth, I imagined I could hear the rustling voices of those whispered strings of pearls, water weaving its way through ghostly leaves into spider silk and beneath pale moonlight skin, sinking into the humming morning hymns of yesteryear.
If I opened my eyes they would either enter my home or disappear altogether; and I feared both outcomes alike.
I taste the storm through closed eyelids,
in fingers trailing across the bed covers:
a smooth, metallic cold,
curled up between toes and teeth
and blanket wrinkles,
uncomfortable to the touch
but bittersweet in an
open, freezing mouth
drawing in the air:
iron and ozone
into the folds of barometer senses