Breath & Shadow

A collection of my poems, some dark, some on the lighter side, some new, some previously published, and some I like to call "Brautigans," after one of my favorite poets. Hope you'll enjoy them!

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Author's note

Copyright © 2018 Antoinette McCormick

All rights reserved. This e-book or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the author except for the use of brief quotations in a review.
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14. A Slight Miscalculation

 

Before I met him, I cast no shadow. I danced through the world, every move a sigh, a song, a symphony of whispers, and left no footprints, only imprints of myself behind. He was a shadow, and a collector of shadows, for he was but an empty shell, a holding cell for all dark things. For what is emptiness, if not an insatiable hunger to render what is hollow whole?

I wish I'd never stopped to sing to him.

He was hollow, and a hunter of hollow things, who made me captive in a pleasing form, though he cared little for such pleasures, much less for love. So I would know my master, he tore out my heart, hid it away for safekeeping, and left his emptiness inside me.

Those who do not love think the heart is only a talisman, a trinket, a tool for bargaining. Those from whom it has been stolen feel it gone, and with the pain of that memory, conjure something else in the space left behind. One small, true thing coaxed out of nothing, is that not what desolation desires, after all?

I should have known...

He was hollow, a hunter, a shadow, a sculptor skilled at rendering form from formlessness, something from nothing, though his greatest trick was valuing the intangible within the tangible more.

He gave me back my heart but shattered me, scattered me to the wind.

I wish I'd had a firmer grip on nothing.

 

Before I met him, I cast no shadow. I danced through the world, every move a sigh, a song, a symphony of whispers, and left no footprints, only imprints of myself behind. He was a shadow, and a collector of shadows, for he was but an empty shell, a holding cell for all dark things. For what is emptiness, if not an insatiable hunger to render what is hollow whole?

I wish I'd never stopped to sing to him.

He was hollow, and a hunter of hollow things, who made me captive in a pleasing form, though he cared little for such pleasures, much less for love. So I would know my master, he tore out my heart, hid it away for safekeeping, and left his emptiness inside me.

Those who do not love think the heart is only a talisman, a trinket, a tool for bargaining. Those from whom it has been stolen feel it gone, and with the pain of that memory, conjure something else in the space left behind. One small, true thing coaxed out of nothing, is that not what desolation desires, after all?

I should have known...

He was hollow, a hunter, a shadow, a sculptor skilled at rendering form from formlessness, something from nothing, though his greatest trick was valuing the intangible within the tangible more.

He gave me back my heart but shattered me, scattered me to the wind.

I wish I'd had a firmer grip on nothing.

 
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