Tipping Point

by Lauren Bender

I bled out
during the night.

A small wound.
I don’t know why.

I woke to find my
body drained,

a bit dizzy.
Must have been midnight

when I hit empty,
a man rattling

my doorknob back
and forth slow,

quiet, angry
at its lock.

Must have been that
wicked moment

when the oven clicked on,
thinking about itself,

and the cat lay dead,
a scrap of plastic

he choked on less
than five minutes ago

still occupying his throat
as his world grew darker

and darker. If not
this, I would have

strangled myself
with my shirt for sure.

Because I said
it’s late, it’s fine,

it’s warm here, I can
get a band-aid

in the morning, I can
take care of it then.

People wear shirts
to bed all the time.

Lauren Bender

Lauren Bender lives in Burlington, VT. Her work has appeared in IDK Magazine, The Collapsar, Gyroscope Review, Pittsburgh Poetry Review, Yes Poetry, and others.

Artist: Matthias Ripp