Not quite sleep, but nearly all we want of it—
These dreams framed in the metal of what’s real,
a silence perfected by voices, the smoky erotic twilight
when the houselights dim and the world emerges
en négligé and as it moves toward us, through gauzy blue,
we glimpse its nudity in the form of stories; when we live here,
everything we want to happen does, without becoming history.
A miracle, isn’t it? This photography of what we feel.
That undetected murder in the mind, the inner burglary
just foiled as the waiter brings two orders of cassis sorbet,
the wish to sleep with so-and-so, are being filmed.
The black car as it plunges inevitably
from the cliff, encodes regret, all that cannot be relived;
with just that open mouth, those outstretched arms, we call out to
what fallsbeyond recovery.
Elsewhere, the Ming-necked girl gripped by the steely gangster
warns that love and beauty are always in danger.
To be adult and still unborn is one kind of ideal.
Here attention’s prenatal, velvet, wall-to-wall,
and life’s doubled, flesh is flesh’s symbol,
a jewel worn on the wrist and in the eye,
diamond in day, diamond again in dream,
the best thing yet we’ve fashioned from the dark,
these angels of our thought on screen;
we watch them raptly as we watch our dead,
the little candles of remembered gestures lit,
loved features we live by, again and again. Again. Again.