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“Midway through this maddening life,” you know
how this goes, “I found myself unredeemed

in a dark wood.” The “right road” was wrong. No.
The road was gone, as in, damned. What I dreamed.

What I blasphemed. Lovers of words must name
horror. I have swallowed demons before,

felt their workings in me. “Clock: tock-tock.” Same
shame. Same grief. Damn me with a touch of gore

on the cogwheel. Things slow down. In your heart
there is a murmur. You know how this goes.

X-rays show blood clots. Demons I can’t squeeze
out of you. That is my horror, sweetheart,

I’ll lose you midway … despite all of those
prayers and tears and pathetic “don’t leave me”s.