Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Nighttime pulse

Wide-framed pit bull spooned beneath my arm. My fingers pressing her scruff, white. A curtain blocks the moonlight. Dark cakes the bed--me, my wife, the pit, the Catahoula Cur balled at our feet. Blanketed in sleep, except me, who can't distinguish sleep from death. Present from future. I imagine the pit's skin already cool, all the cells in my body replaced, ten, twenty years from this bed. I imagine my restless, empty arm. For a moment she stills, a timeless moment, when I wonder if she is dead or alive, fingertips brimming with quantum potential. Eulogies form on my tongue, but before I can utter words the pit's head launches up and she is barking and growling at the curtained window. Both the dogs are barking, so loud now that their screams echo from wall to wall. Someone has arrived home late from the bars, scuffing past our apartment window. Their violent noise stirs my wife. This is how life is distinguished, I realize, and I have never been so glad to shatter.