I worry each detail; yet,
these are no Martin Luther King Dreams
articulated to thousands milling
around Lincoln like galactic spirals.
But ones that ferment, rumble
from below like a bronco
new to the saddle twisting
away as I lie almost asleep.
The alarm waits to ring, the
bedsheets wind about me,
Laocoon wrestling stone snakes.
Conversations I have had turn
into ones I have not;
friends and strangers become incubi
or succubi. Seductive wet kisses
entangle my next waking greeting.
These dreams grow through the night,
to turn their roots into my day,
mushroom’s pale flesh.
Like worms in a spaniel’s heart
they clot my speech–have I
told this story before? Have I
seen this person in another form?
Like waking in an unfamiliar room
these dreams entangle me
making it hard to see like Descartes
past the melting candle to
the circular cogito ergo sum , to
the dream that stands clear,
the dream that has no morning.
(Summer 1990, Bread Loaf, Vermont)