It started in her gut,

that dull ache that held

a breath – pendant, waiting –

just behind the ribs.  Pain

spreading like a thick oil

over bones visible

just beneath the skin.  Fear

gripped her: body, mind, all.

It was happening again.

 

Should have seen

the signs, read

the ticks and tremors of tendons

in hands, in neck and face.

By fatigue, that killer

of the daily race to stay in funds,

she fell; tumbled sobbing

down the well of exhaustion

and slept.

 

And dreamt

of that colourless knight of yore –

fabled savior of weakened ladies –

bringing heroic aid on steed’s back.

But hers was… him.

Supine, drained, her mind only

active, she inwardly watched –

full of dark joy; deep relief –

his approach, black eyes burning.

 

Consummation of the thought

snuffed out by dawn

she sighed

and cried.

He’d lied.

 

 

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