a sinew worked its way through
advancing like a webwork plague
to undermine the surface of their skin

at first you didn't notice
the spidery lightning-like veins traced
here & there, up a neck or under a jaw

from inside an eyesocket, or the hollow
of an ear, the traceries of spreading
veins would appear, subliminal

at peripheries edge, peeking from the
shadowline of a collar, uncoiling from
a sleeve, flickering from a stranger's wrist

whose hand extends in greeting,
a parasite ivy entrenched in the heart
of any chance human meeting

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