Stephanie Jane Robinson

Ballad of the Reading Jail

You were puzzling over some of the empty pages, and there was an empty page for every six that were full. Both of us were warm and we had commenced six hours previous to when it finally happened. Everything looked bruise-blue afterward but I had to know if you had settled in the end. In the hairs that condensed themselves over my skin, I could see that there was very little hope that you'd keep them. Like you said, it was like walking a tightrope in a vacuum.

You recalled all the times when you recalled, and reminded me of the rest. They were blurry to you because this was the time when you felt thin and had pity for yourself. There is no 'woe' in Wednesday's child, because every day of the week brought a sadder story. You looked a little stricken by this, and it was at this time that I noticed that your pupils were so striking and black like wet tar.

I was still a lovely Christian, and had more senses than I currently posses. I had enough back then to reassure myself of the ease in speaking, the lack of difficulty in rolling my tongue over words like I would vanilla ice cream. It was always easier to compete with you because you were very easy to beat, in all respects you were easy to beat. I think the plain thing is that you always liked the feel of crimson, and so didn't really mind when things would turn. Those glasses were never something admirable, especially when I found that old owl laughing at you from behind the stadium wall, and calling you ridiculous names that were only repeated at house parties that James didn't attend. You helped me walk through walls like they weren't even there, and stopped me when I wanted to yellow my ribs with tobacco and skunk, so I lived for about five years more than I should have.