He came to her when she was in pain; pain beyond thought, pain beyond the brain's ability to say what it was that coursed through her blood and bones; wild images of fire and teeth slid across her mind, screaming. Who to tell about him? Doctors? Nurses? No one could know.
He came to her out of the dim darkness of the shadow pools in the sharp corner of her one room room. She did not care who he was, what he was when dim light coalesced into muscle, sinew, flesh, secnt, the beating of a heart, the tidal pool of breath, in and out and in as cool waves of being and coming and going engulfed her.
He lay down quitely, gently beside her in the neat narrow bed of agony. There were no words, or many, it did not matter. He twined his fingers in her hair and smiled: the handsome face of a stranger seen in a crowd and never forgotten, the half forgotten face of an old love. He closed her eyes with his tender eyes. They both slept with deep, lush dream filled dreams until the light washed across the room and the bed and the pain vanished in a sudden golden forgiveness.
She could not conjure him up at will. She had tried, crying into the sparkling dust motes alive in the shafts of sun between bouts of pain's ending and pain's beginning again. She did not care who he was, or what he was. He came when her body called out dumbly into the emptying darkness for relief; there were no nights when he did not come. She arose wondering where he, like dreams, went when she was done.
submitted at 6:43am
27 May 2010