Prose

The Dead

c61The Dead

Lying in the cold-hard bed, he waits for sleep to take him.

The snow falls quietly outside his window and yet the night is filled with the sounds of darkness–a lover’s quarrel, the alibi of a passing train, the shriek and cry of a forgotten child, and still he lies there waiting—waiting for sleep to take him, a name sitting voicelessly on his lips.

And in the shadows he longs for her touch. He imagines her beside him–face shrouded in the half-light; the sheets delicately forming the line of her hip.  She lies in silence beneath his watch–silent like the edge of night where the wind is still and the trees do not speak.

His heart trembles to be next to her. His eyes follow the nakedness, climbing the curve of her spine, crossing the breadth of her shoulders, and pressing his lips gently into the crescent of her throat he remembers how her kisses used to taste like moonlight and mercy.

And the snow continues to fall quietly–scurrying down the empty streets, huddling into the darkened doorways, covering the green fields where the trees used to fly up to the birds and still he lies there waiting–waiting for sleep to take him–to where the lilacs bloom.

The clock chimes madly in the darkness.

Charles Coakley Simpson