"My bed is barren and cold as ice, said David. "My wife is sterile like a desert waste. Promises she made; touch and tickle were her nightly haunts. Now she sleeps alone and so must I. Our marriage vows are locks and chains; our words knife us with their frozen touch. Once I had love and kisses. Once Emily and I embraced; lay with moon and stars as friends of night. Then she went and left; became the bride of one crucified; left me with my dreams of heirs and kin and my vacant bed. My barren bride has touched my bones only in her sleep; her fingers feel and fidget in their nightly woes. My bed is empty and cold; the sheets are creased by her backside and skinny soul. My hand feels the vacant space like a lost sheep; my fingers touch the lines and warmth. Sister Blaise, my Emily, pray for me in my lonely hours; remember me in your holy words and rattling beads. She has the eyes of youth; the touch of flesh on flesh that haunts my feeling times; that teases my untouched flesh like rich and sweet. I rise from my bed like a corpse from its coffin; I see the day come to me with its promises and light. My father spoke of women as a trader of cattle, as one of priceless gems who knows not value but price and tabs. His words needle my brain; his hands and fingers spend coins in waste and want. My mother dined and sewed in her life of weeds; she welcomed death when it called but once. I wash and dry. I dress to kill in my rags and wishes; my mirrored-self seems lost and dull. I descend the stairs like one to hell; my icy bride is smiles and wishes. She sits and stares; her eyes passionless as dull prunes. We talk not; we sit and sip in our silent stew. She clothes herself with youth and scent; her hands touch all with fussy feel. Her nose sniffs for spoilt or stink; her tongue is wagging to her lonely tune. Once she promised me kith, kin and heirs; children for my hand to hold and lips to kiss, but none came; none visit me save in dreams and hopes. My father talked of women; touched the soft tissue of girls too young. His daily jests were worms and maggots to my youthful skin. My unfruitful wife, my Helen, rises like the dead; her frame teases my desiring want; her bones are tormentors of my need and feel. She has gone; her farewell kiss is cold and stiff. His bride of death; this bride of ice, aches me in my night hurt; pains me in my lusts and loves. The window brings me light; a sun and sky; a promised day. My bed lies empty of love; the sheets remember the crease of cold and ice; the squirming want; the untouched and untouching bride. My mother's eyes were raised with tears; the soak of sheets her only friend to hold and heat. The fathering worm of a frozen son tells tales with my aging self.