Breath Is the Measure


My body is flickering.

                       I wake up     make sure I am breathing.

I want to write you              and say                           I don’t want to die.

                    My cold hands fold underneath my pillow.

                               Once, you wrote to me I saw you there and my heart


                    I saw you there I read.

                                                            And my heart I read.

                                                            : :

I feel cold and colder still.     But love is not finite.     But bad habits are so

hard to break—

                     like wild horses     galloping out an open gate

           and all the sudden ease with which     our fragile bodies     can possibly

                    just let go


My body keeps flickering hot, then cold. The man I love is sleeping next to me. I wake up to make sure he is breathing. I want to call my friend, even though it’s 3 am, and say I want to live. I put my cold hands underneath my pillow. But this love is infinite.


My love is sleeping

                                                       like I have killed him.

My body is cold and colder.

                                                       For the hours

I will repeat:

                                                       Please do not die I will say

And my heart I will say.





Molly Fuller is the author of the full-length collection For Girls Forged by Lightning: Prose & Other Poems (All Nations Press) and two chapbooks: Tender the Body (Spare Change Press) and The Neighborhood Psycho Dreams of Love (Cutty Wren Press). Her work has appeared in Nothing to Declare: A Guide to the Flash Sequence, 100 Word Story, Blue Earth Review, Kestrel, Oklahoma Review, and NANO Fiction. Fuller was a Finalist for the Key West Literary Seminar Emerging Writer Award. She received her MFA from Sarah Lawrence College and is currently a doctoral candidate (ABD) in Literature at Kent State University.