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Pesky Rodents

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Can you feel that?
That gnawing at your ankles?
The tearing of your tendons?
Those are the teeth of the rat.

Its claws scrape the ground,
It mills about the edges of your mind.
There goes your sanity:
You’ll never escape that sound.

It waits for you to apologize.
The rat sees infidelity, a deadly sin.
You lied. Just once. Maybe twice.
You can’t even look him in his eyes.

The rat stays until your job is fulfilled.
Beg him to punish you, “I’ll get what I deserve.”
But he’ll smile and whisper, “You know it doesn’t matter.”
Not a drop of your blood has been spilled.

The rat beckons for your attention,
Pries your eyes open at night,
Hold them there until they burn and tears well:
Here’s your taste of full affliction.

For now, inside your stomach the rat stays.
Let it churn with every vivid memory,
Let it spread bacteria to your restless conscience.
It’ll just eat at your organs until your heart decays.




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