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    i. huginn. muninn. from their throats comes a draconic hungry purr, clicking as if the noise catches and sticks before clattering to the ground like a car that doesn't want to start they spiral. you spiral. these aren't so different here though yours is a metaphorical thing less of feathers and updrafts and more like pencil sharpeners and pocketknives you are running low on peroxide. ii. memory. thought. you apologize to your past self your future self: for not being kind or good or happy or the type of person you needed when you were younger steak knife. pocketknife. these things, these blades, are the kind that flash in the sun and show you the meaning of the phrase 'eyes are the windows to the soul'. you suck the rambutan stone and you are, by default, at peace. iii. golden film reel. more sepia, really. colder. emptier the color of yesteryear's forecast when you picked up the habit of holding your sleeves by the hem when they might slip two nights. 977 nights. these things are different only by their edges by their endings and by their titles your past self is angry and ashamed and your present self is sick to disappoint him you are your own ticking. iv. you break patterns. they lend themselves to you, laid out and easy like a spread of block print like sandcastles you step square and firm right in the middle to feel the crumble or the hard, fast way completeness can end and then all you have is a sandcastle with a footprint in it. there are things that cannot be hidden. this block print brandishes old scars and tall socks. v. longevity is the mistress of anxiety. vi. when the sun sets, you dig through the sky searching for diamonds but you find pea gravel flung far past the string of buoys that tell you you've gone too far and to turn back lest your lungs burn up in a flare of oxygen the rope holds the buoys down like scars hold down your skin. you are something gossamer. vii. last night you stood freezing outside at two AM with your head back and eyes flung wide to embrace the stars in your irises. flashlight in one hand, pocketknife in the other the shadows cast threaded a coil of fear in your gut and your knuckles stretched white. you are made of this, of tendons and veins and smallness under the sky, the kind of smallness that fills your chest with helium and lead viii. you look hard for good endings but always stumble into begging for forgiveness instead
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