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I comfort my shivering daughter

in those wee morning hours

just another dream

it can’t hurt you

and, wordlessly, for

her fingers are in her mouth,

she allows me to tuck her back in

and close her bedroom door.

Once it clicks shut, I drop the act

and fast walk, wild-eyed

past stairs leading

to abyssal witching depths

back to the master bedroom,

our supposed sanctuary, where

I refuse to let my feet linger

lest they be snatched

by cold, clammy hands

waiting beneath the bed.

I curl up under my covers,

leaving no digit exposed

knowing only

that I don’t know for sure

whether night’s shade is shared

and what’s concealed within, if so.


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