Blackbirdan online journal of literature and the artsSpring 2020  Vol. 19 No. 1
an online journal of literature and the arts
 print preview

Shaken, as of Things That Are Made
—Hebrews 12:25–29

I dreamed repeatedly that I couldn’t sleep
and then I could, and when I woke
it was to a voice, another, another:
telling me I must have been asleep, asleep forever,
to not recall having heard even one
of these voices in my life
or having seen even one of these faces, they were nothing to me,
they looked unmotivated, irresolute.
And maybe it wasn’t heaven, not any I had read about,
the buildings were shaking,
angels were running for shelter.
There was something off about the afterlife,
fear chooses never to be over.
I hear another life than the one I know as mine,
everything I do not know about myself says,
stop looking for betrayal
and the dream of being eaten pure
and the other side of the other side.
Nothing else is so forgivable
as not having a life
but you must go on thinking otherwise,
for even today you will wake to make one mistake after
another to feel abandoned by,
numbering beyond anything you will ever survive,
repeatedly stepping out from yourself and as
quickly stepping back inside.  

return to top