By the time I wake, I’m worn out.

I try to convince myself I slept,

because I have no memory

of being awake. All night’s dark 

moments resemble each other; 

until incrementally, day breaks

shadows cleanly across the wall.

I can see I am awake. Yet still,

I’m unsure I have slept at all.

My thoughts too are like this now:

ideas and images enter, then part

with only a hint they were there,

like a lover’s perfume on the sheets

hours after she has left your arms, 

returning once again into his.

(January 7, 2023)

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