The lining of my living room.

Silence strips its finish, 

stillness thins its shine—

Confinement streaks 

in tassels

from ceiling tile to floorboard.


Whose jaundice fingers 

reach between frays?

Nails julienne the air, 

wave to me. 


A yellow tongue

laps at the stillness,

scratched and gouged and splintered, 

a desperate whisper.


Eyes peek from behind the wall,

and her gaze pities our bondage.

Regard this imprisonment, 

these bars between you and me. 


She—legs marred by paper restraints.

Me—I can’t unsee, stunned into stillness.

Together, we lament our separation. 


I could still be golden, 

her eyes seem to say.