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What a Dream I Had

Jill Essbaum Alexander

and you were in it.
First we made the bed,
and then we stripped it.

And then, we strapped
each other to ourselves
and did rough things

while wrapped in creamy
linens. Ghost, we played,
beneath pristine sheets.

I lost each mother-may-I
game. You cried
when you came

and I laughed,
laughed, laughed
at the certainty

of our dirty curtains.
But the blighted,
white sentry of sleep

(as is custom)
arrived at sun-up,
left its post.

And when I woke
I was alone.
And the morning

did nobody justice.
And the room felt like
my own room, only

it was under water.
And I was a kind of fire
you couldn’t put out.

The aftermath of sex
is always doubt.

Jill Alexander Essbaum

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