5 a.m.

© Ruut DeMeo, 2019

Fine Print Literary Magazine, May 2018

Sadness can be swallowed

moist heat from Miles’ lungs in a 

brass tube. I drink it. My

breath is caught with longing, my

throat tight with ache, my

tongue tastes blue


this morning some birds push

night away with their calls. Time

is like the Monopoly money we left

scattered on the floor, scarcer

by the yellowing paper-years


Let not this currency be wasted on me

unmarked time, true wealth

let me not wake in a grave

made of real money, the breath

in my lungs squandered on what hung 

in the closet, or stood parked in the



let me render my intangible fortune

into song, as indigo sound spins moment into



accepting its own nearness to death.