Day 776, August 17, 2022

When Dreams are Like Memories

Sometimes the things that are painful become pleasure
and it is through time and repetition 
that a different kind of serenity appears 
like a mirage in the distance. 

Is it something truly there? 
an animal in the underbrush, 
a shape passing under the surface of the water. 

Sometimes pain is a substitute for love. 

Life is a great thresher laying waste and carving furrows in the dry soil. 
I want to press my hands on the brown grasses and bless them. 

There is a dance for water, 
there is a dance for healing, 
there is a dance that evokes the voices of the dead, 
and there is a dance performed on the upturned blades of knives about the joy of living. 

The sky is a confectioner’s delight, 
a barista’s gift, 
a sketch of an ocean. 

After a long day, 
the evening is short and reduced to removing one’s socks and a dream. 

I remember a booth, 
cigarette smoke, 
and it was as if all the world was viewed though a pane of glass. 

There is a voice 
and there are hushed voices, 
there is the smell of the carpet, 
there is the tentative creak of a door. 

In my dream, the back wall is lined with nearly famous writers 
all acting like bad students in Sunday school. 
There is a man I will never swim with again, 
and in the distance a bell. 

There was a time when you could cup a day, 
a week, 
two weeks, 
in the palm of your hand. 

There was a palm reader, 
but I never relinquished my fate, 
and therefore I am like a quiet duck paddling on a vast lake.


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