INSTRUCTIONS FOR USE

Morning:

The debt of days past
leaden with expectation, disappointment, reality.
Eyes flicker open to a ceiling of peeling paint
washed with the wonder of soft sunlight
peering through sheer curtains.

Repeated motions:

Apply a new face
Reshape the body
Adorn with subtle details
enough to convey effort
but not to attract attention.

Repeated sounds:

Please and thank you’s
Click clack of heeled footsteps.
Delicate reminders in the conditional tense
and silent nods.

Repeated expressions:

Smile, always
A downward gaze with hunched shoulders
Crossed legs, lightly folded hands.
Distant gazes, never fixed onto anything
in particular.

Afternoon:

Fleeting office interactions
camaraderie, muffled laughter, and daily news.
Unthanked labor and unending workloads.

Evening:

Rush home
to pick up, feed, bathe, and clothe Dependents.
await Husband
cold dinner, drunken excuses, dutiful nights.

Morning:

The debt of days past
leaden with expectation, disappointment, reality.
Eyes flicker open to a ceiling of peeling paint
washed with the wonder of soft sunlight
peering through sheer curtains.