dusk ribbons into fraying smoke
that rims mama’s spectacles;
nightfall mottles my skin.
I pray for a bedtime story with ghosts
that stay the night, to lick the walls
clean of ink, to muzzle the steep
mountains silvering outside.
I have found ingredients for tall tales
in angled hallways made of slack mouths
teething. on our balcony, rain washes
crude sculptures clean. in the lullaby,
a girl with sodden clothes begs
for immortality. in my bedroom,
a spirit slips down my throat,
trembling as it settles in my belly.