Before Sleep and Work
Tonight I will enter these lines in the shared diary of souls
Because I know I must add them before they disappear
And I alone am responsible for their care.
It will be read by a few, the words all that is clear
But the meaning, while not obscured, different to each
As if we each see the same thing with our own eyeglasses, which focus things perfectly for that one or this one.
If there is a single meaning it will elude me as well
Though I am first to chase it down
Like a boy chases his shadow.
Then I will be able finally to sleep
And when I wake like a child sitting up
In the surf as dreams cascade around me and fall back into a larger mass of presence,
I will open the double doors of the newspaper office
And say hello and walk up the old stairs wide enough for a car to drive up them
And type out the writing that will reach thousands
And be quickly read, thousands of words instantly forgotten
Though it must leave a single shape of meaning, even if muddy,
Even if only for a short time, like a child’s castle by the surf
Still standing amid the roar of nearby waves
And the flutter of a newspaper pulled out of a sunbather’s hands by the wind
That will distract other beach goers,
Who will turn as if the shadow of someone familiar could be seen on the sand.