Day Night Terror

You start wondering if it ever stops;
the flipping through photos, rereading old notes.

It’s quicksand you’re seated in along a quarry edge,
you used to come here to with friends to get dangerous
never knowing that some day the sand below would take hold;
it doesn’t let go. The first fall is the hardest,
you may chip a tooth or expose a bone when you land
side stepping into the silt to steady yourself,
but after you figure out how to cauterize that gash
having a leg stuck in the mud becomes the new normal.

The way in which a word loosens up
after being said too much, you begin to beg the ground
to do the same. It won’t. The earth continues to circle and
sometimes the cycle consumes you. You fight at first,
before accepting how unforgiving
the nature of agitated water and quarry.
You learn to watch the sand puddle swell and recede
sometimes to the hip, other times just past the knee.

The calendar will burn into your bones with the cautery.
A birthday, anniversary, the restart of an annual tradition.
The silt will suck you in without warning
with a barroom television or in the mirage of privacy
without discrimination. You start wondering
where all those friends have gone, ruminating,
why, aren’t their ankles still stuck?
Is anybody going to pull you up, did they forget,
did they even land anywhere
near the mud?

You’ll wake up in the morning.
Your body will only be soiled by sweat.
You’ll remember, that quarry was closed years ago
when somebody landed on a car and broke their leg.
You’ll pull yourself out
of the bed and into a shower
that is to say the time it takes to recover grows shorter.

You start wondering if it ever stops;
the distance between the reminiscence is enough

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