by Gary Hardaway

Each day becomes dread realized,
hour by anxious hour. There is no relief

as the workday ends, for every morning
brings a new smell of dread. You are

too fragile now to live alone. The nerve ends
tingle their alarms at fingertips and ear lobes.

The lungs forsake their love of breath. The arms
resist throwing off the small weight of sheets.

The wrenched body screams its opposition
to the pale light and endless sequences

of small, physical steps. It screams,
but rises nonetheless to resolutely march.