She was born on a freezing January morning,
seven pounds, two ounces
and named after a deceased uncle.
Her mother nicknamed her Mooney.
At five, Mickey swallowed a pair of tweezers.
Her stomach shuddered with familiar contortions
When she underwent her first crush
Five years later.
The gripping pain felt too similar
to that time her stomach
Was freshly pumped.
Piano lessons began at nine.
The nickname prodigy
arrived at eleven.
She was a daughter never spoiled.
Kept at close range.
Never told she could watch thunderstorms—
never told she could be a storm.

At college she met her first love.
After six months he left, and the night he broke
it off she sat on his back porch
for four hours in the rain,
watching a dark window and allowing herself
to focus pitifully hard
on the raucous noise of silence.

The piano grew quiet by the end of that year.
Another victim of someone's melodic aneurism.
She began learning languages.
She swam.
A handsome man from one of her classes would watch
her butterfly
Through the water from a distance twice a week.

Married life came promptly after college.
He was the settled for.
At 29 she began an affair-
a mad Baron Munchausen traveler
blessed with a scar on one arm, elbow to shoulder,
from a mountain climbing adventure.
Her fingers ran the thick line of tissue
while he was forming his goodbye into words.

Insomnia was the next affair.
Sometimes sleeping pills, sometimes pacing the dark.
Sitting in a living room,
one very safe and mauve,
her eyes would drift and slide over the walls.
She would ponder painting them a bright color—
the white bearing the putrid ambience of mediocrity
she breathed in her house.
She imagined rising to go watch her children sleep.

A certain fear had rooted
about bringing other lives into hers.
Her blank walls consumed her,
all the skin she touched came from mere brush bys—
she never clasped it.
She began to walk the dark sometimes
With visions of blood and strings
running down her arms and hands
after murdering an ivory-clawed piano
come alive.

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