Final Winter Flow

YES I am stingy with fear, even
out of line
begrudging stimulant prod & prescription
placebo-love rations
that fuel fiery breath to mark a page with runes
at every double-edged purr

I end where I begin: a blurry dream
of the decisive step
on a forest track of saplings, bent & snapping
unbroken to wear our secret out

so I remind myself you never loved me
as every day I need
to remind myself: you never loved me

AND yet & still
five score & a couple more long years on
the timeful scrape of your skin
traces enduring outlines of yearning lack
in the clotted pour of my desire