Patrick LeonardListen


Caroline divided her day into fourteen hour segments of rot and return. Once Caroline secured the space below several torches, the remaining loads of what will soon not be pulsed in the flicker song of her missing mother. Proper attire for instances of such memory escaped without notice in the wide scope of ambitious chemistry. Caroline to the third shadow on her left, "When you arrive, disregard compulsions of quantity." Caroline put faith in her two dimensional sisters and giggled when they stretched themselves the length of the wooden track.


Born from failed torches, Caroline ignored the rules of combustion, favoring the explicit guidelines of quench. Dressed in august soaking attire, the shore could not keep pace with Caroline's midnight shouts and trumpet blasts that named each crest. Perhaps Caroline fantasized too heavily the moment where one vibration arrives desperate at the other and misremembered her father completely. Light spread quiet the echoes of Caroline's guilty tracks from her thin route obsession. In the tangled nest of her lifelong hair, one peculiar segment of Caroline's mind spends all his time as a drenched flint unprepared to ignite all that tempted and surrounded.


Caroline could not have known the seamless wooden box bounced from a slow-pull cart when she smelled the unmistakable attire of the shortest ballerina. Surely Caroline's late arrival at the auction required an adequate explanation but not before she composed several letters to the newfound pale girl. In fear of being tracked by verbal infidelity Caroline swallowed every syllable before she spoke of disappearance and dawdling. Caroline to the audience of purchasers: "You must ignore my absence from the initial segment, for I have brought forth an object of paralleled desire." Caroline felt the letters swell in her, took the torch from beneath her skirt and set the chest ablaze, "Ashes," she announced, "of an orphaned dancer, the size of an empty pocket."


From the ceiling boards, Caroline heard several of the men agree, "When the lanky beast arrives, use your best teeth to subdue her." Six and three quarter hours shrunk and fitted in the dry wood, Caroline lost all track of thirst and the grotesque fingernails that stole nits from their stew bucket. In the increased frost Caroline cut the outer segments of her toes to prevent further advancement of the contagious bite. Had Caroline, as advised repeatedly in her dreams, torched the chamber of deerskin maps, this pursuit may have only appeared in a fragment of sleep. And even the feat of outlasting murder attire left to wither in the tiny hope of a left-handed boy.



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