The Somnambulist

[12 April 2019]

Lean your head against my chest. Your even breaths syncopate the rhythm of the hands
of the clock. Co było, nie wróci, as some have said, but still
we carry it with us, believing that perhaps memory can be made
into something material one day. The powers and dominions have all but subsided,
the castles crumbled and the watchfire dimmed in Salisbury and the Duomo.
Hera in all her glory could not hold the eye of a boy, yet the
plum blossom settles on the lake; the light falls,
reflects, demurs, echoes underneath and around and within until the
pool becomes a holy fire, a monument to something wholly sacred and
utterly other than itself, and the blossom a dark pyre backlit against
a late winter sky. The fish slumber in the depths. The golden prize, too,
has long slipped into dust, or at least into the annals of a history so long forgotten that
they have become in memory both larger and smaller than they once were.

Memory is born of experience, and experience is something
we have known to be true, at least once, before the vacuum pulls us forward and backward
and inside and outside until we’ve stretched out of shape and
become something we could never recognize. The imprint remains, while
hoary hairs of wisdom too-soon begot crown the heads of the ancients on their hallowed frescos
and the sun and the moon and the scales of justice blinded fade into the deep.
The mother holds her sleeping child under the olive tree; he holds a withered fig.

Lean your head against my chest. I know you have slept in other arms. I know
you have dreamed dreams not mine.
I stand in-between, largely unmoved; unmoved because unseen and
unnoticed, but not untouched – an assault on the inarticulate, unformed
unpropitious murmurings that form what we carry with us as we die and the clock
of the saviour chimes somewhere in the distance. The moment of self-transcendence
stretches on and on in perpetua amidst Egyptian cotton and the hyacinth and the somnambulist
while the sleeper sleeps and the dreamer dreams.

4 responses to “The Somnambulist”

  1. awisewomansjourney avatar

    Very nicely written! <3

    1. Nathan avatar

      Awwww thanks so much!!!! 😀

  2. Stevie Turner avatar

    Lovely poem. Thanks for adding it to Click & Run.

    1. Nathan avatar

      Oh of course!!!!!!

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