gathering her hair in her hands, she pulls,
no force to keep her at bay, and
the strands snake through breaths, with
no ripples, no anchor on either side, besides
her hand, which shouldn’t count
as mass at all.
cracking her knuckles, she clenches her fist,
watching her joints smile up at her, roll in their sockets,
and scramble off her palm, some trailing apologies down her wrist.
she grimaces at the sight of her empty mouth,
though the empty eye sockets in her head
gulping back tears, she inhales deeply,
the saline flood thickening beside her spine,
and she’s choking, sputtering, gasping
for breath, until she remembers
the gaping hole in her throat where
her voice used to be.
craning her neck to smell the sunrise,
her shaking frame stands beneath the day,
and she lifts her chin, willing her back to
straighten, her trembling to cease,
and she inhales deeply once again,
this time smiling.
she collects her smiles, one by one, till she can recall who she used to be.