Daylight Hours

Daylight fades and gives way to darkness... {CC would be muchly appreciated} {fantastic cover by River_Summers}

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1. Daylight Hours

 

 

It's Winter

  and the world isn't white,

     but grey like ash,

       like cracked and broken dreams. 

Shattered by loneliness,

                            desperation,

                                     and the crushing weight of snowflakes.

 

Black nose, bleary eyes of frozen ice,

 the puppy struggles forward.

Legs shaking, paws numb,

 it stumbles through the snow.

           It f

                a

                  l

                    l

                     s over and over again.

 

Until-

 warm eyes

 warm arms

 warm home.

And the little girl holds the puppy close,

 holds it tight,

  and promises to never

   leave it to the cold.

                                      (oh the icy icy cold)

 

 

It's Spring.

And the world explodes,

 showering the world in colour.

Of roses and ivy,

 of fresh hope and

  frantically plastered-together dreams.

Clean and new again...

 until it all comes crashing d

                                                   o

                                                 w

                                               n

 

And the dog dances

 among the flower garden of scents and voices.

And although it cannot see the colours,

 it recognises the vibrancy,

  sees the hopeless romance and promises

   that will inevitably s h a t t e r.

And it knows they are there.

 

And the girl squeals,

 her hair a golden halo as she spins.

Looking every bit the angel she could be.

Should be.

 

The dog dances with her,

 spins with her

  through the vines of naivety

     and false hopes

       and ill-fated dreams.

It joins her,

 spins with her,

   as her parents cheer them on,

       masquerading in their delighted masks

         the ones they hope that their daughter

           will never have to hide behind.

 

Because they would rather die

 than admit that there really are monsters underneath her bed.

Ones that only she can fight.

 

Alone.

 

 

It's Summer,

 and the girl is All Grown Up-

  ready for the BIG BAD WORLD.

That can't really be as bad as they say.

                                                                     (can it?)

 

And she's too old for the dolls,

 for the dresses that were

   so so perfect

     all that time ago

                                  (only those weeks ago)

 

But her dog waits for her at the gate.

Because he's hers now,

 hers forever,

  for all eternity.

 

And her parents cross their fingers,

 and pray

  to whoever will listen,

   that she will defeat the monsters that lurk in the shadows.

 

And she sets off to school,

 mane of spun gold trailing in wild ringlets

                                                                                 behind her,

   her face open and clean,

     an open book

                             (too open, perhaps?)

       pages filled with words in cursive writing,

         borders decorated with flowers

            and butterflies

             and the sunny days that loom ahead.

 

And then one day,

 he notices something different about her:

  her hair is different.

Razor straight,

 swept around her throat.

And it's strange,

 because she spends so much time on her hair,

  that she forgets to take him for his walk.

                                                                           (and she never forgets)

 

And then one day,

 he notices something different about her:

  she's coated in unfamiliar scents,

   chemical smells that burns his nose

    and he whines

      but licks her cheek anyway.

Even though his tongue stings.

 

And then one day,

 he notices something different about her:

  her face is different.

It's not nice,

 and he almost can't recognise her.

He looks for the little girl,

 the one he danced with long ago,

  underneath the paint and products

    that make her

           beautiful.

                            (beauty is a construct based entirely on childhood impressions, influences and role models)

 

 

And now it's Autumn,

 and the world begins to surrender to the night,

  and people begin to

   give in to the darkness

    in the sky and inside themselves.

 

And still she walks to school,

 every day.

But he notices

 that the life has been dragged from her eyes,

   gouged out.

And he whines.  

 

And her parents whisper to each other,

 and wonder that maybe their daughter

  isn't as happy as she should be.

                                                           (maybe?)

And they watch closely.

But they miss too much.

 

The monsters that stalk her,

 the ones that tear her apart with the words of cyanide,

  disguised in the wide, sarcastic eyes of belladonna.

The ones that impale her with their sarcastic arrows,

 and shooting names.

 

And when the dog greets her at the gate,

 he tastes the salt

  of her tears

   as they fall in bloody  t

                                               o

                                                   r

                                                   r

                                                 e

                                              n

                                                  t

                                                    s.

 

And he smells the sting of copper,

 of rust.

But he doesn't understand

                                               (because he's a simple animal)

 how could someone be so brutal?

And how do the cuts not hurt?

 

When her tears soak his neck,

 when her face is buried deep into his fur,

  he lies on her lap,

   and waits until the droplets of scarlet subside.

Because what else can he do?

 

She tells him everything

 and he listens,

  but still does not understand.

He can only hear the pain.

The agony that licks her words like

 like fire.

 

And then she goes back to school again.

                                                                        (because she cannot escape them)

 

 

It's Winter again.

And he is old,

 with grey dusting his fur

  like ash

   or snow.

 

And he's lonely

 with only a slab of granite for company.

 

And her parents' tears have long gone.

Washed away in screams and fights,

 in endless blame games

  in countless glasses of wine

   and late nights at the office.

 

He still doesn't understand,

 but feels the emptiness inside,

   the pain that splits him open.

As he wonders where she's gone.

 

Why she's gone.

 

The cold freezes him,

 numbs him.

And it's a welcome escape.

 

He wants her back.

Wants the languid nights of 'extra-helpings for you',

 and the early morning walks,

  the endless belly-scratches

   and ear-ruffling.

 

He wants her to never have left him,

 just like she promised.

 

But she left him.

 

And he lays down next to her

 next to the wall of stone

  with her name scrawled on in cursive writing,

 

 and lets the cold drag him

                                                d

                                                   o

                                                       w

                                                            n

                                                                after her.

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