Samantha awoke slightly startled from a dream.  Her chest rose and fell with a stutter as it often did in the throes of uncertainty.  Her eyes darted around the barely lit room.  She could make out the shadows of familiar objects.  She decided she must be in her room.  Sam sat up slowly, looking and listening for the canary with its yellow sun body and shifting melody.  It was there, she knew it…had just heard it and stretched her arm through the darkness to the bedpost where she thought it must be perched.

 

Her body folded nearly in half before she felt the cool, round ballast in her hand.  There was no sign of the bird; no tiny feet clinging to her index finger like in the dream.  She rolled her body back to its original position and leaned back against the wall.  She touched her finger to again find nothing.

 

Frank had not woken up during all of this.  He was an impossible sleeper and Samantha knew that he must never dream in a stoned state, in that rock-hard heaviness that proliferated in his limbs. She curled up into the side of his body listening to the glory of his peacefulness.  How she wished she could disembody her soul that way and just sleep, but her mind never allowed it.  Sam lightly traced the shape of Frank’s ribs counting each one’s desire to escape gravity and propulsion.   He was her savior and he didn’t even know it.

 

She let herself be quieted in his steadiness; in his world of sleep; in his world without dreams.  She let her breath follow his and lead her down the dark, narrow path forming beneath her eyelids.  She let the beating in his chest rock her.  She let the expansion of his bones touch her face like wings, brilliant soft wings.  She knew in that hollow place in their togetherness where she was not in his place and she not in hers, that she would never be free of this.

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