salty insomnia

it was a quarter past midnight

and everything spoke in the rain.

 

the trees, the windows,

the roof

all murmured softly

 

and the girl lying under the sheets

listened.

 

insomnia-riddled and morning-

crushed, she searched the darkness for

dreams she could only have while awake

and the monsters under her bed

whispered hush,

so she pressed a hand against her lips

and tried to stop her lungs from crackling

too loudly.

 

evanescent snippets of sleep left her drained,

itchy, lost

as though the rain had washed the rest of the world away

while her eyes were closed

and she had been left alone.

 

when she gave up on sleep entirely

[as she did every night]

she went to the kitchen and sprinkled salt

on her tongue.

it tasted like the sea they had swum in together;

like the soup he had tried to cook;

like the tears she hadn’t been able to cry

since the nurse had pulled the sheets over his head

in the frozen hospital room

 

so she carried the salt back to [t]he[i]r bed

and curled up on his pillow.

 

the trees, the windows,

the roof

all murmured softly

 

and the girl lying under the sheets

listened.

 

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