On watch

©2023 michael raven

I have to watch myself tonight. Tonight is one of those days where I feel a dreamlike wanderlust aching and writhing deep inside. I have that sense that I’m missing out, but I might not if I just slipped through the world and left old me in the wings, waiting to hand off the next prompt without a script to work from because I stole it as I left the scene.

I don’t know where I’d go. Or do. Or be. So it seems likely that I’ll merely imagine wrestling grizzlies in a dense forest, trying to make sense of a war that never was and hoping my teeth are sharper by far than the old man standing tree-tall above me, his dark fur bristle and thorn. We’d struggle at the edge of the mountain’s jagged waters before the fall, then tumble into the rocks below and people will wonder if either of us survived — especially when they hear of the ragged man wandering the country with wraith eyes and a bear claw around his neck.

No, I don’t know her name — never dared write one down for fear it would be wrong the moment I did. Something that has the rhythm of stone, a taste of winter, and the scent of black velvet candling in the twilight hour. A kiss to kill, just like that old schoolyard taunt, except it embraces both death and the ecstatic in one forever moment, a realm where time is meaningless and taunts are torture.

Throw away, go away pale and weary… My skin becoming cold ashes; unkindled and hungry.

7 thoughts on “On watch

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