Seven cheery Happy Birthday tulips have bloomed past their potential. Their sick sweet scent decays alongside odors of dirty laundry and half-melted candle stink.

My jigsaw puzzle pieces are all slipping together out of control. Too late, I’ve realized it’s the wrong picture. This puzzle doesn’t match the pretty advertised cover. My receipt went out with yesterday’s trash.

An old movie plays. There is no color. There is no sound. The faces of long-dead actors and their long-dead dreams is too familiar to be entertaining.

Family does their daily dance… around me. Tiptoeing past my door to their own private planes of existence. Pausing only at inopportune moments, they rush in to ease familial guilt until one of us vomits from emotional claustrophobia.The sheets are crumpled in a frustrated heap; mascara smears and lipstick screams like fallen wishing stars across the pillows. Above, the tiny white lights of hope flicker out – onebyone. Peek-a-boo, God. I see You too. i see you too.

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