Hotel Lamps This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

March 22, 2012
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I flick on the lamp
on the particle board
night table between
these two beds.

Left; full.
Right; cold.
Under the starchy
space blanket linens
our chilled feet
avoid touch.

We squint
in the newfound light
and yawn,
our strange figures
so desperately distant.
You turn to the window,
sit up
in your cold sweat.

Outside there
is an April storm,
some rolling thunderous
note to the night
as the stoplights change
for phantoms.

You are one of them
in your thinning white t-shirt,
no touching,
fingers should pass through
your ectoplasmic soul.
Your shivers
are riveting flashes of lightning
at the edge of this hotel bed.

The wind whips the dark rain
against the third floor window,
and you make a small sound
like distance, and I cannot
turn, I cannot look.

I flick the lamp off
and plunge us into
the swallowing depth
of this cardboard room,
your shaking soul
sweating miles
away from me.

Your shaking,
so far and unknown to

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