Posted tagged ‘dream poem’

The Winter of Dreaming Bears (Revised)

July 21, 2018

The Winter of Dreaming Bears

It began with grubs,
which the bears felt, instinctively,
were the hub
of the universe.

Bears always dream a little
of grubs,
but that was a winter of
false starts, faked ends,
and the slips from freeze to thaw,
from thaw to bone rawness, drip back
to ice pick, unmanacled the bears
from their annual
mummification, nudging them
to a snail’s swim,
where their ursine minds churned, overturning
remembered stones, and their paws mimed a scratch
for those whose burrows they could surely feel
within their fur,

while the grubs, also disturbed
by the fits of damp, stayed far
from bear furrows, dreaming as grubs do
of the dead; a corpse a kind of copse to them,
the old home place.

And the dead–-what did they dream of?
They will not say; we can’t surmise–-only
that when we walk a lace of snow pierced
by persistent grasses,
under a sky heavy with new powder
turning to sleet,
we want to believe that we animate
their wintering subconsciousness,

that they long for us in the rapids of their unmoving eyes
not as a bear longs for grubs,
but maybe as that same bear yearns
for the sun when it swathes the night sky,

its glints guiding us
as if we were ships dreaming
that we had sprouted feet
that could walk on water,

and as if we could walk that water,
into a direction that would take us far
from that starred bear, those dreaming dead,
those whom we in fact long for
in those times of cold and dark,
faked ends, false starts.
This is a somewhat changed revision of an earlier poem, this revised for Brendan’s prompt on Real Toads about dreams.  The earlier version may be found here.  The pic is mine; all rights reserved.

In An Instant

June 10, 2015

In an instant–

In an instant
all I can remember are the shapes
of his fingers pulled
from the water, digits big
as cigars, and, though they curved
as I caught the arm, sodden under the shirt cuff, streaming
sleeve of suit,
the effect was of someone raising his hand
to ask a question–

I can only think of the one I had been calling out
the long blue minutes before, which still rebounded
about the floating surfaces,  a stone caught
in a single skip–
where are you?

A rather enigmatic poem. 

The pic, such as it is, is mine;  as with the poem, all rights reserved. 



June 2, 2015


A small bald girl pushed her head
between my arm and torso the way
a dog might,
her head as silken as a dog’s
only round as a globe,
and, of course, not furred; she whimpered,
wanting water,
and I asked a woman
who might be the ward nurse
or maybe even
her mother, why I could not give her any.
She gave me some dry reason with which I tried
to appease the girl, spouting stock about
tests, treatment, until the swim of her eyes lost themselves
in my side.  When I finally freed myself–for this
was a dream and I had things to do–
realizations to make in lost corridors
of no purse, no keys,
no money or ID–
I found that, while pinned to me, she had sucked
a twist of my shirt, the cloth wrung into
a crooked finger–

and I wondered, hurrying, half-
horrified, away, whether
she hadn’t lost more fluid than
she’d found–but was afraid
to even check the wizened cambric
for damp,
as if her sickness were something I
might catch, or,
her need–

All the rest of the day
the sheen of her scalp shone
in my head’s dim, and I wondered whether
my whole life would be different,
or would have been different
all along,
if I had somehow taken her
to water, let
her drink–dreams
being like that–

Another draft poem not written to a prompt.  I’ll link to Real Toads Open Platform.  Pic is mine (as well as poem!)  All rights reserved.


October 3, 2014


We lay as if dead.
I’d pled with you
best I could hardly moving
to keep your head
back of my legs,
but could not
raise my own
to track yours.

They’d be back
any second–after the shots
and shouts,
some side stairs seemed
to have beckoned–
an echoing clamber up
that set us wondering
if we could run, but
we lay close, only hearts

I kept thinking
that only one was bad, the other one
on the chase,
but I realize now
I had no basis for that.
Still, when the bad guy flowed by,
I felt relieved briefly,
even as the other turned
into our niche,
bending his knees to the same pitch
as his weapon, whispering,
“I’m sorry, ladies.”

I thought at first–almost–
that it was an apology–as if
for the inconvenience–until
we were rinsed by blur–shards
of stopped-time–maybe pocked
and whether we too were hit, I wasn’t sure, only
that we were lying now
harder than ever.

A sort of a poem that was prompted by a dream (rather than another site’s post!)   The drawing is also one of mine.  (All rights reserved.) 

I’m sorry to have been slow returning comments–a lot going on, but I will visit!  In the meantime, if you have any free time, please do check out my new book, Nice, available on Amazon and on Kindle (99 cents!)  Or check out any of my old books!  Thanks much.
PP Native Cover_4696546_Front Cover



No Shortcut in Art of Dream

April 2, 2013

No Shortcut in Art of Dream

You led me onto the shortcut; we had to walk
our bikes through the ruts. I already doubted
the time-saving, the mustard dirt depressions stumbling
more than one step, the embankments that separated
this path from the road unsettling, when I saw
the first body, the individual hairs of crown and beard shockingly
wire-like in the way death
turns strands to prongs, each follicle
an endpoint, lips dragged into

It was half-lodged in a cavity, a
collapsing catacomb
in the mound–
did I call your name out loud or just think whoa, that you would see
it soon enough- for you had stalled behind me now–and that we better phone the police
at the other side, when I walked on past three more,
their hair crested in the odd slopes of bodies’ fall, rumpled waves
of sleeve and pant, skin yellowed
as the clayed earth–and maybe we should turn back, I thought;
absolutely that we should turn back, for I could see the blur of more
around the bend, and called
your name but could not see you, cursing that part of you
that fed on line and shape, color
and symbol, that, even in horror, would look for what
might be made into art, that you might draw
from, when it occurred to me that there were possibly assailants
too waiting ahead, with sharp-knived mouths, fists gripping,
and that maybe even going back would not
get us out of this, and
look at me now too, writing of it.

Admittedly a rather odd draft poem that I thought I had posted last night (the first day of April) as a possible start to a poem a day for the month. But it is not a regime I think I can keep this year, and even last night I forgot to press the “publish” button. Agh.

I will link this to dVerse Poets Pub Open Link Night.

Dream Lids (Friday Flash 55)

March 22, 2013

Dream Lids

We baled out
into a swamp–bad idea, turtle
wading onto my head,
snapper, its creased leg eye-dangling khaki,
mottled shell
a dangerous helmet. You turned
to help.  “Don’t use the oar,”
I pleaded at your hoist, but seeing aim
in your eyes, shut mine,
dream lids able to shield
as needed.


Here’s a re-write of an older poem whittled down to 55 vine-tangled words for the G-Man.  Let him know.  

A week of a lot of work at work.  Agh.  Have a great weekend. 

National Poetry Month – Day 17 – Dolphin Dream

April 17, 2011

Over head

Draft poem for 17th day of April, National Poetry Month:

Dolphin Dream

The hospital required me to cart
the scanner needed to test my heart,
my torso too and abdomen,
the places growths had lodged within.

I carried the scanner in a bag;
those who saw it guessed the sag
that weighed my spirit, slowed my walk,
and, human, they began to talk.

Defiant, I broke for the sea;
the waves that day were high for me.
One forced my dive far far below
what looked to be a crushing blow.

The shelf’s drop was precipitate,
so fathoms deep, I had to wait,
and watch above the crushing bubbles
that I recognized as deadly troubles,

’till, as my lungs o’erswelled my breath,
I saw a sight beyond the rest,
from my cerulean deep sea bed,
a paisley pattern over head.

Stirs of silver, curves of grey,
muscled turns as clear as day,
Sharks? No, dolphins. My heart took flight,
awe subsuming background fright.

Their ease, their grace, were palpable;
to wish them past felt culpable,
though soon my lungs were too compressed
to sense much more than harsh distress.

The need for change brought exhalation,
despite the lack of further ration–
no air down there–and so far down,
I felt that I must surely drown.

I woke up treading toward the light,
gasping, panting, in the night,
afraid to settle back to sleep,
though longing to re-spy that deep.

That I could watch those dolphins twist
without a clutch inside my chest!
That I could sink into that dream,
sparing no thought for scan machine,

or hospital, or sense of tumor
the hush of the half-murmured rumor;
but translucent blue was not enough,
to smooth the diamond of the rough.

All rights reserved.  Suggestions welcomed.   (P.S. – I’m very happy with the painting!  Made on the iPad 2!)

Turtle Dreams (Draft)

December 14, 2010

Turtle On Head

We began the swamp on foot.
This was a bad idea,
a turtle suddenly on my head,
a large one, I dreamed, a snapper.
I could just make out the
creased unwrinkling of one short khaki leg
as it dangled down my brow like
an ancient bang; its mottled shell,
a dangerous helmet.
You somehow got a boat, turned to my aid.
“Don’t use the oar,” I pleaded,
as you hoisted the long, smoothed wood,
but I could see aim in your eyes.
shut mine.

(This is today’s draft.  Any suggestions?  Especially at beginning or end, let me know.)