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  • I envy the way that my greasy tub of lip balm liquifies in the heat of the summer. Imprisoned and suffocating inside the sticky console of my drowsy sputtering car, (hidden from view at the end of the lot--the drabby, shabby gray one that seems to announce “clearance on control-top thongs!”) the yellow salve pools and cools, transforming itself into a pristine product.

    This renewal is a modern refiners fire. I dream of this sort of change; the kind that requires no effort or courage or fear or belabored explanation to judgmental, although well-wishing confidants, only the simple sitting, sweating... suffering quietly and alone. And after it all, becoming sleek and virgin once again.

    If I were a waxy skin protectant, with my sunny top label rubbed off, worn away by the clawing, desperate fingers of the desert lipped, I would relish the stuffy purification ceremony of high noon. I would look forward to it daily and feel reassured that by nightfall, I would congeal again into a cleaner and more worthy version of myself. I would take heart in a certainty available primarily to petroleum based lip care products: that following the blazing torture of transition, I could expect the quiet pride of being simultaneously being better and the same.
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