At night the wife of the old warder hears
the bolts shot back and can no longer sleep.
A man stays loyal to a place longer than he knows,
cells copycat down into his deepest breath
and with him close she hears how imprisoned men
do laps inside his head.
She listens in on flustered conversations: break-pen,
rebel-neck, blood-guilt and shadow-cull.
She keeps her eyes open – at times
one of them scales the wall and slips
between the bed-sheets out of his skull.