Kristina Marie Darling Melancholy, Sings the Mockingbird. Terror. Nothing is ever the same.

The field that is the backdrop: that it will be covered in snow or burned from beneath a bed of frost. Field that is the color of her wedding dress, turning barren. The barrister parts his lips.Surely the law can find what has been lost? The landscape is a book she reads over and over, but doesn't understand.


*


To imagine deliverance, she must keep her eyes open and closed at the same time. And never look away. She holds the flowers far from her, fist held tight against temptation.


*


She's halfway between a meadow and the sea. One might feel we lack a more precise description: bride en route to some other coast.


*


Comes the cold weather she remembers with displeasure: not a single worthwhile wedding gift. Pristine linens become harbingers, but no one phones for help—most of the beautifully wrapped boxes are empty.


*


To perfect grief, the body's city turns out its lights, each window's glass gone dark beneath the ice. The neighbors can’t see the old photographs burning inside the house, or her pocketbook, with its silver chain and ever-lengthening trail of coins.


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