the cherubim

House of Heart

She wishes  to  fade away,  to be less than nothing, unborn. A leaf on a tree in late October,  falling to the shadowy earth, devoured by the mud of the murmuring forest floor.

At dinner she sits across from the  smiling man.  Later  they retreat to a larger room  that is  flooded by honey-colored light where he reads from the book, moving from life to death, from lead to gold.  Lighting strikes  the corner of his blinking eye,  the twitch of his crooked smile.  He warns her of  saintly heroes, how she must fight against all temptation, live in his light to hear the angelic chime of bells that summon her  to  kneel and  remain beside his  benevolent being.

At dusk he takes her hand and leads her through a  wooded path to an arbor where she must undress  for she is not pure  and  he  is good and wise…

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