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narcotics & tv dinners

I just moved into the house of someone I once knew. They died in the room at the end of the hall. I eat dinner late most nights, usually after midnight. I put on a white shirt for each meal. And a black necktie. I roll the sleeves up to my elbows and dig into a Swanson's Hungry Man tv dinner. Last night was fried chicken. Tonight might be fish or salisbury steak. I listen to my mouth chew and my throat swallow and the refrigerator hum and the tapping of moths colliding with the sliding glass door. The house is surrounded by orchards. I don't dare step outside after nightfall. Trees are dangerous after dark. The medicine cabinet is well-stocked with the former occupant's pain and sleep medications. So now I sleep well--and deeper than a well. And I no longer dream about night trees shaking their limbs in a muddy sky.

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