Hollow • Alec Baenen

Her hollowness is washing through my evergreen

Fingertips pressing her empty into the villas shaded in black and blue above her cheekbones

Our white picket fence splattered by pink-eyed tree branches that topple from rooftops, festering from inside the gutters and snapping like pencils at the corners of the doormat

Welcome Home

Where the stains from breakfast show through the tablecloth and the front lawn is engraved in fine china plates that screech like violins orchestrated at the hand of cheap silverware

This is where the soil becomes sand

No roots take hold here other than the gray that burrows through her scalp and the thickets of weeds with thorns thicker than that of the neighbor’s rose bushes

But I still keep her in a vase above the windowsill, my blood shimmering a crimson brighter than that of any flower petal at the brush of single barb

Her grit is rubbing scabs into the lines between my gums and nothing can wash her from the stains on my teeth now

Her evergreen is washing through my hollowness

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