Skip to content



Anemone Knight, 04 Oct '12

I hate going to sleep by myself.

It feels wrong. The space next to me is just that – space – black emptiness that should be filled with breathing. Life. The emptiness creeps into me, I feel raw, hollow. No rhythmic breathing to match my own or shape to fit to mine. There’s safety in your arms, and love. The night swallows me, blackness eats me slowly, from the inside out, dissolving away everything. I can’t remember how it feels any more, to be cushioned from that loneliness.

Before I’d ever met you, when I’d spent every night of my life alone with emptiness, still something primeval stirred to warn me of the creeping black. Surely, back in the sweeping caves of long, long ago, we would have felt comforted and warm right through childhood with our mothers before quickly passing on to the embrace of our lovers. Yet now our young, they lie alone in waning light and shadows, reproached for fearing shifting gloom that inches in around them. We bolster them from their natural response with a blanket and a teddy, and perhaps a night light to feebly fight the monster under the bed. Then in their teens the teddy’s sold and the blanket long forgotten, just a pillow in the night to cling to though they would never admit it. I lay for hours wondering why I was alone when my parents had each other, surely a child needed an adult more than they needed each other? But now, guess what? I’m all grown up and lying here at two a.m., wishing that you were in my bed holding me together. My pillow used to do, but now I know how it really feels to hold someone and fall asleep together. A moving puzzle sea; from our synchronised breathing rise the waves that roll through slotted jigsaw piece bodies and rock us gently on our journey to the dreaming world.

Comments · 5

Page 1 of 1

  • Anthony Blackshaw said...

    Loved the last sentence, I had wondered if that was just me - clearly not.

    • Posted 6 years ago
  • Susie Shircliff said...

    Amazing last line! Powerful!

    • Posted 6 years ago
  • Anemone Knight said...

    Thank you! I was hesitant as to whether to post this or not as it's not really a story, but I'm glad I did now!

    • Posted 6 years ago
  • Jean Woest said...

    Great imagery and rhythm. It's so hard to do honest introspection and yet make it universally approachable, but I think you really pulled it off well here. And my favorite image was referring to the prehistoric cave days. My mind was already going there and so seeing you write it just made me feel in time with the story that felt very rewarding and connective. Tres bien!

    • Posted 6 years ago
  • Anemone Knight said...

    Thank you so much!

    • Posted 6 years ago