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by Fiona McPhillips
Just as the veil of day begins to slip
and street lights flicker on to break its fall,
I see you in the shadows that are cast
like stains around the flat we used to share.
You reappear in unexpected ways,
the smell of antiseptic or my teeth
marks in a piece of fruit, the punctured flesh
as soft and broken as a busted lip.
I count the ways in which you left your mark,
the scabs and scars like braille upon my skin,
reminders of the battles that were lost
before I got a taste of victory.
So while I wait for sunrise to dismiss
the cold nocturnal shades of black and blue,
I huddle in the artificial light
and shine it on the darker side of me.