A Woman Named True (or) I Am Breathing

Brooks bit the granny-smith
that his wife packed for lunch.
A crisp frrsshunk echoed
across the blistering blacktop.

“Focus!” he commanded.

I lay there, back to pavement.
Shaggy head sweat dripping
to instantaneous sizzling evaporation.
Arms extended, red palms down.
My abdomen is collapsing.

Brooks sat criss-cross applesauce
atop an outstretched polo.
Heat rose from the ground
like an apparition;
melting the horizon
in ultraviolet waves.

“I once met a woman named True.
She had a crooked smile, and a pretty virtue.”

My chest is rising.
Slowly. Controlled.
At three breaths per minute
untrained nostrils flare.
Air conceptualizes
and burrows deep
into expanded mind.

“I sought refuge in the bosom
of her battered hope.”

My belly is rumbling.
Hunger and thirst,
immense and clamorous,
skips-to-my-lou down
yearning corridors
of bleeding heart.

“The odd misshapen edges
of our imperfections
fit together like a puzzle.”

Brooks chucked the core behind his back,
running fingers through receding grey.
A mortal sigh rose from his depths,
and dispersed into open air.

“The ticking of time’s erosion
set upon us like water to a mountain.”

My lungs are filling with air.
Impermanence swells
with tsunami force;
flash flood cleansing
broken levee of
decaying soul.

“We stood opposite what was left,
like dueling gunslingers of old.”

My lungs are emptying.
Antiseptic and frighteningly temporary,
clears the anxious interior battlefield.

“And walked away.”

I am breathing.

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