Photo by Alexander Possingham on Unsplash

Bed Riddance

11 pm

I sleep on the left side of the bed
so you can be on the right
the soft drum of your snore
signaling peaceful dreams
making me smile

1 am

I cannot bear to wake you
even though, within two hours
your back has pushed me against the wall
half my body left without the cover of a sheet

5 am

You wake me
it’s time for you to go to work
nuzzling your face into my neck you say
I hope you have a good day

7 am

I wake up for a second time
when I go to the bathroom I see two things:
the dripping bathroom mat left down on the floor
and the toilet seat left up
but I can’t bring myself to care
about the little markers that showed you were there

We danced within the ritual of these bedtime blocks for nearly 10 months
from Autumn to Summer
hibernating under the thick duvet
to sleeping naked
the whirring fan drying our post-sex sweat

In bed, we watched the films you like
the ones you’d seen and loved, or
ones you’d always wanted to see

In bed, we drunk red wine
we ate take-out, and leftover chocolate from the cinema, and tubs of ice cream remember that banana flavor you insisted I’d like?
I can’t say if it was any good or not
but everything tasted better with you

We were in bed, again, lying in each other’s arms, the day I asked
if I could be the only one you took to bed
the only one you’d share a mattress with,
that sacred place where we shared our dreams and ambitions,
shared our dreams and nightmares,
shared kisses in the dark during sleepless nights,
shared our days – shared our lives
we were in bed
when you said
you said you would find monogamy

Suffocating like a careless sleeper cornering you against the wall
on a hot summer night

as though I were a butterfly collector
poking pins through your thorax
fastening you to my board forever

Now I only wake up once
at 7 am
I have the bed to myself and it feels so big
and I feel so small


Lizz K is a writer based in Melbourne.

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