January 26, 2014
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She wakes up and her back aches.
She fell asleep on the couch again.
Loneliness turns bed sheets to snow
and she has never been
one to embrace the cold.
She runs veined hands across her
wrinkled face, wipes away
drowsy remains of her dreams.
She folds laundry, metal buttons
the only source of heat
in this sharp February.

She washes dishes, water calms
fingers, shivering with anxiety.

She pulls her sleepy daughter from
bed, grey morning light sneaks in
through openings in the blinds.
She pulls her first born’s hair into
a long blonde ponytail

She then stands
at the door, the silhouette of
her body blocks the cool air.
She smokes a cigarette
and blows quiet grey steam outside
into the southern cold.

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