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untangled hearts This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

silky smooth and warm
rough in utmost security
a tired wakefulness of gratitude
soft leather boots tumbled,
folding over
meeting cool floor discreetly
stretching out to touch the edge
of fallen blankets, their love
unnecessary
compared to hand on hand
on waist on shoulder
lips, complacent
skin satiated against sheets
ankles in togetherness
with each other’s
unappreciated complexity
his favorite purple panties
are still stretched across her hips
disclaimer for the
unsuspecting night before
assumptions unverified
she’ll be awake soon, slipping away
stepping over notebook, abandoned by sleep
infinite
definitions and stanzas
that linger on paper, awaiting fresh words
she’ll don purple robe and begin breakfast for two
breaking her promise to let him cook, just this once
as he drifted off
unwillingly, inevitably
leaving him to find
plate under toast under butter
next to strawberries
set on the table by the bed, waiting
for him to wake
which he does,
and watches the highlights collect
across her face, twine around her hair
underneath his careful hand, stroking blonde
until, for the second time
her breathing flutters and eyes open
to nothing more
than the sound of his breathing
and his fingers,
curled around her shoulder




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