The first time she read the book
the ceiling cracked.
In bed, she watched the plaster
above her. The crack
looked longer in the morning.
The second time she read the book
the house creaked
and popped, as if uncrossing its legs.
Her bed shook for
a few minutes, waking her briefly.
The third time she read the book
she turned pages
cautiously. A test. In the morning,
her hair was full
of plaster bits, brittle as broken eggshell.
She left the book on a bench.
But she dreams
of the book, and when she wakes,
her body is covered
in shattered plaster and shards of wood.