On my stillborn days
when I stand in paralysis of the lover who starves himself
in honour of my leaving
who speaks my name like an unfinished obituary
I forget I am still full of magic

on mornings when my shame is a thin snake
with a belly full of teeth
when my chest unfolds the origami of guilt
it has learned to keep from dropping
from years of loving louder things
I forget my glass hope holds enough light
to make a necklace

I forget my grief has taught itself
the language of northern stars, of southern crosses
of torches in the eyes of the flickerless

I forget my own company
was the first song I learned the words to

I forget this white sting is the hex of the giving heart
the stamping out the dormouse
asleep in the house of quiet reason

on nights when I come home to letters
on the doorstep
uppercase explaining why
my self-care is every wrong thing in this world

I remember how right it feels to fall asleep
holding on to my maiden name.

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