There was a dream I once had as a child, about a city of lights covered in white- where the skies were red, and the ocean was oil. A place where the ground was cold; hard to walk upon, and even harder to sow. And a child came to visit me with bright blue eyes- eyes that were hungry- and with skin that clenched tightly about her bones. And her hands were outstretched before her breast- shaking and cupped together. And beneath her nails were blood, dried and cracked along her fingers that were browned with age, and layered. Layered like the rags upon her body; wretched was her face. Wretched was her soul. But I had nothing to give her, so I walked away- turned my back and willed myself to look upon the grass that shimmied itself between the spaces of my toes. And the meadow was then watered with my tears, and the ground became softer with my grief. But then night fell and all was cold again, so I went back to that little girl who lay shivering by the oil. And though I still had nothing to give her, I put my arms around her fragile frame and brought her close to me. And as she cried upon my shoulder, I cried upon her hair-
Then all was dark for a while.
But then light flooded in all at once-
And when I turned my head to see what warm thing was beside me, I found that it was my darling little sister tangled up in our bed sheets- with not a single sign of death to mar her sleeping wake.