There are, within the human body,
A hundred thousand miles of dreams packed tight
Into three inches of bone
Between the shoulder blades.
Vertebrae protrude like black pearls
In the dark,
Asking for somebody to free them,
Crack them open,
To extract the imagos curled inside their bone barracks,
To remind them
(I saw the skeletal hands of trees
Who had longed for the October snows and been left with hot dust
In their mouths.
They have known the long impossible.
They have hosted the murders
That come to watch the cars drive past.)
(I drank sticky tea in the summer and thought nothing of the unkindnesses
They went home to their rookeries when the sun grew dark.
They left me with the glow-bugs,
The thrum and pulse of cicadas racing the deep sleep,
The bone between my shoulders humming with the end
Of an age.)
I lost the third instar of my dreaming when the sun rose.
It thought that I wanted to be changed,
That the small bones of my back could be broken and remade
By its bright fingers,
Knocking at their rigid keys one by one and saying,
Come out, come out...
It didn't understand that the tiny creatures curled up inside were allergic to its touch.
It knocked and waited and I waited for the moon
To chase her away.
To protect and to break apart the bindings
That hold my dreams close to my flesh,
To rock me to sleep while they crawl out on their little electric legs
And beat their wings around my head.
They whisper the breaking of the world, and I am
The Faraday cage.
The Catherine wheel.