Monday 3/12/2007 11:32:00 PM

She chewed on a loose piece of skin near the last knuckle on her first finger. Gnawing through the dead cells. The collagen within stretching like caramel from her hand to the stones behind her lips. Washing it down with a stiff shot of telephone hopscotch. Throwing her thoughts over the buttons. Jumping from one to next. Spilling through memories via the digits assigned to them.

It had only been a few years. She hadn't forgotten, but she couldn't remember.

Little hiccups she used to hear in the way they'd speak to her. The giggles in their hands as they'd begin to touch her. The faint applause in their eyes when they'd stare. The many footnotes of many lovers. All gone or faded so much that they might never have been.

She puts on her questions one leg at a time. Perched on the edge of her small world. Drawing in colors she hasn't named yet pictures she hopes she'll never recognize. She hems her life with needle and thread. Like any one would. Sloppy stitches to adjust the distance between herself and her fall. An encyclopedia of all the persons she had been.

Herself now a mortgage. A debt she owes to each of them.

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