I know – I wrote over 90 poems during April’s Poem A Day challenges and I barely shared any of them. I’m mean …

Well – not so much. i hope to submit most of these to publishers who accept un-published
pieces. Some editors consider even a poem draft posted for feedback as being
“published” – so that means not sharing most – even on Facebook.

But my mind is on this piece – a bit of a ghost story – and likely will not be published except in a chapbook … so here is for #mondayblogs.

Want to hear me read it? Click here!

sleeping under a storm

  

i see a black mass between me and the door tonight
living and aware, a sentient hurricane;
and dreams of spiders white as bone when my eyes close
i could easily be a tree wrapped in webbing this shivering night
 
a proverbial ship on the storm

for these crawlers and their fleshy mandibles
perhaps that is why i feel alien legs on my skin -i see nothing
brush nothing, slap nothing – yet still the skittering forays
like raindrops racing down on a window, gathering force

a flashlight will not reveal them, nor a mirror, i tell myself
 
“don’t turn left”
it’s an atmospheric system that will pass, a wind bringing
unpleasant temporary guests; this hurricane waits just beyond fingertip
measuring, testing barometric drops and highs of pressure

the air gets thin, it’s hard for lung walls to breathe

and i, also testing measuring, trying to identify friend or foe
wait it out, batten down the hatches, tell myself it
could be phantasm, could be a dream, could be i finally shattered again
a tropical storm drowning an isolated island – they do recur don’t they

it would explain how i feel like i’m wading as i pace the room
 
or could just be a fallen hair, lying on skin too attuned, too reactive
a thin strand of hair blown, bobbing as the fingers of wind flick at it –
i shed hair all the time – minute variations of atmospheric pressure
blowing strands across my skin –

that would be rational, a logical supposition to explain away

heightened thoughts in the dark, a theory to shine light on …
were i not bundled in my nightclothes and heavy blankets, no skin exposed –
battened hatches, remember –
and the hurricane not lurking there smirking and persistent – i feel

i made no impressive impression, my rationale not
 
withstanding full gale winds of this inky night  –
how did i not notice the numbers on my clock being a tornado sky green
oh i want to sleep – hibernate into non-awareness until it passes – but then
i see bone white legs bloom from between pillows, glittering uncaring eyes …

and i’m sitting again – contemplating –

willing this to dissipate, flow north, return me to becalmed waters or dry land
telling myself it’s not really there isn’t working – and besides
even the flashlight’s beam confirms its swirling and threat
i don’t speak to it, however: what effect has shouting to a storm ever had

on a storm – no, only patience wins out, enduring, waiting it out
in dug-out shelters, even the cats have huddled under the bed

Ariel

April 9, 2016

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