The beginning of a headache.
The hands on the clock don’t move.
She wonders if she can live through the pain.
Nothing to numb it.
All anesthetics forbidden by a decision made years earlier when the weight of grief was not yet calculated.
She cannot pray. She will not kneel.
Why should she stoop to lie to a God who leaves her so alone?
Sleep won’t come.
She tries to read. The same sentence.
Again and again and again.
Time has stopped.
It will be 3:34 AM forever.
She is hungry.
No, not hungry. But empty.
A glass slips from her hand.
She picks up the shards.
One pierces her left thumb leaving a gash that will become a scar that will bear witness to that endless night.
She sits on the kitchen floor.
Tears mix with the blood that seeps from her thumb.
She draws circles on the linoleum with her own blood.
She draws the sun to invoke the dawn.
She continues until there is no more blood – no more tears
and only then does she notice that the dawn has finally come.