Monday, November 9, 2009

WWP 7: Hanging Man

Sam Jinks

Tonight I come home angry and so it is difficult to loosen and shed my skin. When I finally do and hang it in the hallway next to the others by the skin of its neck it resists me, shifts with the win to fall back on to me, but I am firm and on the hook it stays. I move my naked bones into the kitchen, where I think I see you for an instant, staring in the window at my weathered weary skull with hope drawn about your shoulders like a warm woolen shawl, its fringes growing tendrils down your arms, beneath your skin. I wonder for a second if you can not even shed your skin at night, if it has grown into your bones, tangled itself around and around inside you, and the thought makes me grow sadness from my fingertips for a minute or two as I think of the weight of skin forever pressing in on you before I close the curtains.

In the night I am haunted by the thought of you and several times I grab at my arm and expect to feel a skin surrounding it. It was naught but speculations and yet I can not shake the thought of your skin growing tighter and tighter until it becomes a part of you as surely as your bones and blood and sinew, and I wonder at the strength of that emotion. When I sleep at last, I dream of your face, gaunt and unchanging, in my window.

I wake in a sweat and walk downstairs to find that something has tangled my skins, wrapped them brittle and shredding around one another, and when I disentangle one from the pile it is two sizes too small. I think of you and your skins, too small like this, and I think how it would feel to be your bones. I have never thought of you so often as I have today.

So someone in my creative writing class told me last class, "You should use more punctuation." I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT SHE WAS TALKING ABOUT.

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