I share my bed with visions of white nights and an illusory craving for sleep. During the night the mirror is like an open hand. In the dark the mirror resembles a sweaty palm. When I look into the sweaty palm I see you and your eyes are like pores. I turn the mirror over the sheets and I can see your elbows. I see everybody’s elbows. All the people in this world have elbows and every cup of tea would be incomplete without an elbow. I could put my finger under your elbow and pull you out of the sweaty palm. I take the cup to my lips and feel the odour of boiled leaves of tea and lemon. Each time I pull you to my lips I hold you by your elbows. That is why in the morning your elbows look like the smooth white ceramic of a teacup. You smell like lavender. I’m thirsty but the cup is empty and you say I shall never have this drink because it is forbidden. By the use of malevolent hands this drink is cautiously hidden under many layers of elaborate movements and mind traps. And thoughts and islands that swim in never-ending oceans. I’m thirsty and I want to have a sip. So I go back to the mirror in my room and have a sip from it. The mirror that once reflected you. And say get off me. Nobody’s going to take care of your flowers while you are gone. This sip is forbidden. People shall look at you with a wicked eye. I cannot deny the sculpted look of this cup resembling your parted lips. I cannot say that here. The mirror has eyes and might talk. I plant olive trees every time I want to have that forbidden sip. Have a mouthful of it. I still have enough space for olive trees. So I play, play, play with this shirt of yours. I can’t find my words between its folds. You haven’t used too many words here. Just the usual stuff I guess, nice weather, really hot outside today, it is the time of the year when true beauty comes out. You throw words like crab apples. So I play, play, play with the sheets. I try to find some lost word. I look at you and try to forget about the grapes. I watch you and forget about the olive trees. None of your words is lost. I can see that. They’ve trained you well. So we stand asunder, far away from each other because this sip is forbidden. In one of the other lives we stood hand in hand. In this one we have to be apart.
Sip and stop.
And for once, when the chatter of steps is lost, you become an extension of my arms. And for once, your shoulder puts mine into place. Because they can’t see we can use pillows instead of wings. They can’t see we live by wires and lines that with time dig deeper into the skin and tell stories about us. The frontier of the skin is a collection of our lives. They can’t see because they confuse the approach of death with the occasional loss of memory and the petrified threads of grey hair forgotten in the bathroom sink.
Sip and stop. Sip and stop. And sip and stop and sip and stop and stop and sip and stop and sip and stop.