I am sitting beneath my kitchen window. spiders gather here like angels with surrendered wings. they fly into this cool glass space, lulled by the risks of yellow, of heat. this window is absolute. this window is silence. this window rearranges molecules. it wanes in shadows like a milk moon. an indian walks up my driveway. he is whistling. he is carrying a paper bag. he walks with apples, he walks with flames. ash falls from his arms like feathers.

he tells me to close my window.

I am sitting on my living room floor. the wood is warm in the sun. it holds me in grandmother’s arms. the indian is searching through kitchen cabinets. he wants rooibos; he wants it dark red. cigarette smoke coils around his head like a moulting snake. I watch it breathe. I smell its liquid skin. I tell him that smoking kills and he laughs. everything is death he says. death is life. he finds tea. he pours heat over dried leaves — they bleed. the house fills with the silence of plants, of consuming, of life. I lay my hands on the soft-worn floorboards.

I can hear trees sigh.




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