Slowly, we are
becoming each other.

We carry our
selves, interchangeable,
like collapsed umbrellas
in this no weather.


Eyelid nor skull
can filter out
the dull blue light
that hums nightlong
through our dreams
and half-sleep.
It’s as if,
in this blue light,
before the hushed windows,
even our lying down
were merely an enactment.


John, the architect,
has plans. He draws –
heavily crosshatched
in 3B pencil – walls,
windows, corners, fences,
the fire escape.
He calls them ‘freedom sketches’.
I buy one with a poem.


We pad the lawn,
passing each other,
passing our selves.
The garden seats
have all been upturned.
The cat, the cat
parades the plant borders,
followed by the lady
in the blue nightgown;
tongues of laurel
and rhododendron lap
and rasp at their passing.
John sketches the wall
with its trompe l’oeil gate.


The blind man tonight
is wordless.
He revolves in his chair,
hands like rudimentary wings
feeling the space
about him. He leans
forward, head full of dark,
and listens. The space
is filled with walls,
tables, beds, chairs
that project, at most,
a sense of their encroachment
on the air. No gift
of voices. He seems
very nearly not to breathe,
but he keeps returning
to test the space
he thinks he occupies.


From dreams of drowning
I wake to walk
the aquarium. Our limbs stir
the light. Notice
how graceful our
movement is,
how shoulders
gently touch like gills,
how our dolphin
voices only seem
to answer.
We do not need air.
This light suffices,
our water. We know
drowning, drowning
and the other modes.


The girl in the callbox
shouts and shouts
down the phone. ‘I’m
wearing my new dress.
My new dress. Do you
like it? Do you
like my new dress?’
The receiver
refuses an answer.
‘Do you think
that he will ring again?’
We see her dress;
we are sure that her caller will
ring again, won’t
ring again. We are all wearing
our new dresses. Do you like my
new dress? Will you
ring again?