I adore the hair sprouting on the chin. I run my hands on the bent spine,
the dimples in buttocks where unease sits, the incessant burning of the skin where even a fragment of dream becomes an irksome burden. Pain outlines with a thick marker every cell in her body.
I listen to her talk day long about incontinence; she begs to use the diaper through the day. Please. Please. Please. She is worried who will wipe her bottom, who will cook porridge if I am travelling. She panics, blood has drained from her face upturned toward me from the wheel chair where she is bunched.
I touch her hands, the skin lacy with designs like a butterfly’s wings. I have learnt to respect those flakes that fly like fine dust to encode in me patterns of life and death.