Sueño Perdido

After Valery Larbaud.

Fall, 2001 / No. 6

Oh endless grey clouds choking the sky,

black moon, invisible stars,

distant squeal of tires beneath

the shell of a car with a tree growing through it;

oh various trembling monsters

that lurch through cold empty cellars,

and whose scribbled claws swipe from beneath my bed,

who await me in places I’ll never go; oh

constant clatter of locomotives through

my chest, tiny trembling pigeon

lodged in my bowels, ill-formed kernels of love

glittering in the back of my throat,

in my shoulders, in the palms of my hands;

oh vivid memories of decades before my birth,

of all the pain I’ve caused, and the pain for which

I bear no blame, the peaceful dreams

of those dear to me, the misspellings on

eroded headstones shrouded in mist; oh chaos,

exhaustion, bliss, confusion, serenity, blankness,

panic, quiet, quiet;

oh endless roaring clouds

rolling over my head, I offer you this:

my lost sleep.