secrets left behind in istanbul

Old, old, new.

your face is chiselled from war wounds and eyes broken-in from trenches. nothing on your back but muscles lacking weight and all the little lines on your palms, facing downwards, are gritty with sand mixed with hair gel.  you shaved your beard- you left a window open in your past life, curtains blowing out when a gust rushed the apartment in a fury of you leaving. your socks hang out of a cardboard suitcase and your money is stuffed hastily into a back pocket of a pair of knocked-off jeans from a shady market. american.  canadian. north.  the great white.  you sold your car to buy the ticket, now sell your soul to buy your life.  it works different here, pouring water in a jar just turns it into swamp, the winter freezes the jar and makes it crack.  the plant never survives until it does.  the spring takes from you more than it gives back.  march chills freeze your toes because your socks fell out on the plane ride.  you are obsessed with pavement.  you count the footsteps people take in front of you.  you count the number of people who stand in front of you and watch.  zero is a lonely nothing. it’s not even a number.  it’s hard to look nothing in the eye and bow your head in prayer.  you wonder about the celery eyes, where you saw them last, on whose feet and which step it was, 10 295 or 12 509.  you take your right hand and feel your spine.  your jeans are still bought from a shady market.  your apartment has no curtain. you are writhing on the sidewalk with your jar of broken water.

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