Sleep

The Daily Post prompt is: blank.

Photo©Staffan Ström

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When the night is too loud and crowded,

and the air will not be still,

when the heat will not subside or the cold ease,

and even the cats fight among the chimney stacks,

I try to recall the emptiness of some other time that perhaps I knew,

when the world was a blank canvas, an empty screen,

and the humming and shrilling of other people’s problems

did not impinge on the gentle, rolling space inside my head.

Sleep, a river or an ocean, waveless and limpid,

laps behind some wall or cliff, all dark ripples and fizzing foam,

if only I could find it.

If only I could find it,

I would dive, as graceful as a gannet,

and skim the green depths, otter-like,

and forget.

Lost, the tender darkness

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Lost, the tender darkness,

Soft and gently yearning,

Strewn with the glittering stars of passion,

That filled our immortal nights.

Better the dread of the dark,

The night terrors that haunted each sleep,

The wolves with bonewhite fangs,

Glinting in the dead darkness of childish nights,

Than this hollow wasteland,

Specked with dead dust,

Now its lodestar is gone.

The light of the morning

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The light of the morning wakened me

And the song of the blackbird in the tree.

I close my eyes to the mocking beams

My ears to the song sung not for me.

I cannot bear the sweetness of the day

That fills with light the empty space

So full of passion until you left

Saying this could never be your place.

The morning breaks on broken dreams

And scattered fragments sharp as any thorn

For you have gone without a backward glance

The love I seeded in your heart stillborn.

You never heard the blackbird’s morning song

And never felt the flutter of my heart.

You never felt it sink into your own

Nor its grieving when you tore them both apart.