Don’t fall asleep in the bathtub. Your dreams

will absorb the water and grow larger than your life.


You’re so adept at imagining how things are supposed to be,

you cannot see what is present before your eyes:


a nest of prismatic bubbles floating beneath the faucet;

your reflection in the silver of the faucet, tiny, warped,


and wonderfully vulnerable; the gem-sized spider

dangling further and further from the ceiling


on her impossible thread, landing on the rim

of the tub before dancing out of sight;


the shut and locked door; the privacy

of your own nakedness.


Don’t fall asleep in the bathtub. Focus

on your breath, the miracle of it.


You can’t bury yourself under this blanket.

That would be drowning.




I love it when the breath gets knocked

out of me. I love it when the hellwinds

spin me like a globe. This is the Field

of Lamentation, but I never wail;

I just whirl and whirl, a dancer

in Hell’s endless ballet, whipped

into motion by gyres of arousal.

My heart is broken

free of whatever bonds still held

when the last of my blood hissed

into the pyre’s flames. I was strong

until he touched me;

then I sank

into the fire, my ashes blown

across the sky, soft as a flock

of doves. I took my life

as he once took my hand:

with full, anxious desire.

Now a vaster thrill sweeps

me off my feet, and I am strong again,

ignited by adrenaline, my face

warmed red by the brisk slap of storm.

I never wail.

I let the winds wave me through the air,

an awful flag. I swing my arms

like battle axes. My hair floats

like a ghost, and I’m no longer heavy.