There’s blood on my hands
On my arms
Splattered on my feet.

There’s blood on my shirt…
Fuck…
Not this shirt.

My mind is suddenly alert.
Ready
To act
To save
This goddamn shirt.

Oh
This shirt.
It’s my favorite one.
I’ve had it since college and
There are tiny holes where my love for it
Has burned right through and
the cotton
is perfectly
Worn
And it’s ruined now
Covered
In blood.

No. Not this shirt.

I run to the bathroom
And flick the light on
My eyes
-too well acquainted with darkness-
weren’t ready and so
I see that flash of light behind my lids every
Time
I blink.
I pull the shirt off quickly
But carefully
Trying not to get more blood on it as it moves over my bloody,
Bloody
Face.

I turn the faucet on
Cold water
Mom always used to say,
“Cold water
Immediately
On stains.”

Come on, come on, come on.
I plead with the stain
Not this shirt.
This blood has already claimed so much
Leave me
My fucking
Shirt
Please.

I watch
-Head lolling –

vaguely enchanted –
as the too-red
(meaning too-fresh)
Blood momentarily decorates
the white porcelain
And spirals neatly
Down the drain

I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror
The blood on my face
My neck
My arms
It does not belong to me
And neither
Does the grisly beast
Living behind my reflection’s
Empty eyes

What
Have I
-Has it-
Just done?