This morning, half-awake,

my eyes peek over

at the luminous face

staring at mine: 5:30 a.m.

My muffled mind goes

round and round

like a hamster on a wheel

in a cage

for another hour

caught up with concerns

that may never come to pass.

My feet finally meet the floor,

finding their way

Into waiting slippers

that carry me down

a tunnel-black hallway

to stairs leading

to the front door.

I search a ghostly dawn

for my morning newspaper

unearthing it beneath a bed

of tiny holly twigs whose

thorny leaves draw blood bright

as red berries from my finger.

I am in the real world.

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