Analysand

I found your dream journal and
and I remembered I too, am small — as we
curled like the pink inside a shell,
you under the blanket with one foot out
and me stock-still on top of the duvet because my god
you are a hothouse flower, unmoored by winter,
and I like the cold; we puritans burrow in snow,
in April, loving long summer November days,
but today you mentioned the weather after
lighting a candle on the nightstand,
wondering aloud if the world would
erode around us.

It’s been four hours since
you dozed off and thirty minutes
since I got out of bed for water
and found the thing dog-eared
like you were taking notes for a test later,
handwritten like you were asleep.

And you scare yourself –
I did not know how the world held you captive
or that it frightened you,
like it was something you might lose.
Here, I wrote down one of mine for you,
next to the candle, which you forgot
to snuff. “Had dream where all
my teeth fell out,” I write, while I stare
at your split-peach mouth, stammering sleepiness
hoping you will find the dream and won’t tell me,
hoping you won’t notice that the book, or the thermostat,
was nudged a degree.

(written for Poetry Writing: Form and Craft)

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