You give your heart out, out for chicken feed. Smoke his cigarettes and trail his lead. But you're liked—liked, but never brave. You dig your fingernails into his bed frame and wonder if these breaths give protection, give anything more than their heat. Now the nickname his friends tailored for you hangs around your worries like a jewel, and in a whisper shaking through the dark, you ask him what those fuckers think you are. He says "Oh, please. It's no threat. It's not what you think, they're dicking around, so let 'em. Forget 'em... and if you can't forget 'em, it's nothing to me. If you do forget 'em, it's nothing to me." So be still. Be blank. Bare, without a body, a voice, a nerve. Your nerve.