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Asleep with heart disease

I lie in bed and listen to his heart
and know that any moment it may cease.
It's been four years since I first played the part
of stethoscope to diagnose some peace,
but not in silence. Never more can still
and solitary joys relieve my mood.
I revel in his pulse as if the trill
of mockingbirds could sing in too thick blood,
and trust in sounds more musical than Brahms
that thump beneath the vigilance of ears
attuned to finding terror in the calm.
Unwittingly, his veins allay my fears
and hum him off to sleep while I, awake,
count days between the beats his heart should take.



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