dust on the cover
of the book I’ve been
meaning to read,

on the surface
of the life I’ve been
meaning to live,

always more,
and never enough,
always beginning,
and never finishing;

nothing ever comes
as you expect it will.

run your fingers
along the book’s spine,
let your nails tiptoe
like high heels
over the dust,
careful not to kick
any of it up,
lest it remind you

that you, too,
lie waiting on
the surface of
a book that
the universe
forgot to

the early autumn chill
allows you to shiver,
reminds you that
a cold thought
is not a sad thought,
but a counterintuitive
way of keeping
your soul

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