i am burning from the inside out. maybe outside in if i thought about it long enough but i don’t much care to.
from the darkest depths, my stomach shrivels hot, pink once, dyed an artificial brown the color of baby shit. emulsified baby-shit-brown as the color wheel turns, from the sticky hot blood, deep red, that trickles from unidentified ulcers, to the stomach acid, a slick lime green that floods my esophagus every night before cascading back into my stomach.
i burn hot and steady, sputtering every so often like that radiator in the apartment we once hid in. that co-opted hideout with its exposed brick walls and its undefeatable cold. it’s radiator burning on the far side of the kitchen, sprawled out on the linoleum floor, a diligent effort that never quite pulls through.
i miss that radiator in the dead cold of a los angeles winter night, only the steady breathing of late night traffic to muffle the sounds of the radiator matching my constant interior fire. in the bed of a stranger, hot breaths pulsing like the blood, or maybe the stomach acid, vibrating like the ulcers. i miss the companionship.
i stand now, alone on a street corner somewhere, heavy sighs as i burn like the dim orange streetlight. fingers turning yellow where i once held my cigarettes, knuckles, violet scars from stomach acid lime green, i stand and i wait.
i wait for a rundown rust bucket of a car to pass in hopes of once more hearing a sound reminiscent of that radatior. i wait. and i burn.