She hated mornings the most—
waking up to remember it wasn't a dream.
Would the dull throb never go away?
When would she be able to breathe without a hitch?
Why did it have to hurt so much?
She padded to the living room,
notificationless cell phone in hand
slippers sliding along the hardwood floor
because her feet no longer had life in their step.
Mornings had been their time,
after the chaos of kids leaving for school faded and the house was quiet again.
They would sit on the couch and drink endless cups of coffee
the same brand from Holland that she now poured into her soup bowl sized cup.
Then it was outside
—walking and talking.
To the outsider,
their snatches of conversations about friends, family, and food, held no substance
but to them,
it struck at their souls and hearts
as they spoke about love, loss, and life.
She clutched for dear life
the edge of the porcelain sink they had picked out together
a better choice
than stainless for the French provincial kitchen
Her eyes squinted in the sunlight,
the view from the window a travesty.
It was an absurdly beautiful day;
the sky was Delft blue
with a sprinkling of cumulus clouds
that reminded her
of the days they spent on their backs in the school yard
laughing at the faces in the shapes
Springtime had come at last
after a brutal winter
The grass was steadily headed towards the color green
that vibrated when you looked at it
while the flowers, bit by bit,
poked their stems from out of the soft black earth
To her, it was still
dark, cold, the earth devoid of life
Tears welled in her eyes
as the hot, bitter liquid burned her tongue
and traveled down her throat
no more sugary sweetness
she no longer walked to keep fit
She was too afraid of running into
her best friend,