by sophie

sadness that comes over quietly and softly puts its chin perfectly in the curve between your neck and shoulder. ah yes, you again.

to dream of what would be happening were you awake at the moment, were it a different time of the day in the same bed, to wake to that difference. last night i dreamt we slept until the bus was arriving for me, and was torn we’d spent no time wakeful together. on the bus i had a whole row to myself, watched the swamps stream by. I-10, I long. let’s say the watch word this spring is patience. say the body as a blanket. another dream: a tour of the Gulf. you will float, a guide tells me, in this vest, long enough to sleep. but if you sleep without releasing the anchor, you’ll float out to sea. he tells me of the first time he woke this way, but anchored, his body jolting into nothing but the sea around him. this is supposed to reassure me. there’s no logic to the dream — how, if he could then pull the anchor up on his own, would it have held him to one space of sea all night? unexpected, these bodies. all of their need for touch, for sleep. new orleans is colder than i imagined it but it’s winter after all. forgive me for wanting. i’m glad the world keeps surprising me. the last thing i thought about last night was snowflakes, how the first man to take a photograph of snowflakes was a farmer. the radio’s the best teacher i’ve had all year. one night there were thunderstorms, talk of another child’s name. in the morning a brass band nearby played songs for the marathon runners, mile 23.  i am coming to believe in the seraphs again, that they will always follow me, these long men like felines who move with impossible smoothness through the world, always beckoning, half-vanishing.

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