At the end of every summer the days start to vanish -
the skies turn white,
and then gray,
and then overwhelmingly, endlessly, inescapably

We ran into that house with the wind
Stomping up steps the snow would fall off

our wet boots and squeals and laughs and cries would fall out
of our cold cracking violet lips
And we would close the door on darkness.
My heart kept time slowly then,
its rhythm stronger and steadier than the shiver that ran through my skin.

We would sit down side by side on matching green pillows
short legs stuffed under a small table.
Our bowls of spiced soup steamed before us,
the sacred red broth mixing with our blood
so our arms and legs and hearts could grow.

The days are white, turning gray
but this time
when it’s black I’ll be alone
standing over a stove in someone else’s kitchen
remembering those perfect bowls
that served to satiate our sleepy souls.

As my heartbeat fades beneath the sound of my chattering teeth
I’ll keep bowls of gypsy soup
warm on the table
and wait for my brother to
wander in from the cold.