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Dream condensation before evaporation

Met the older French literature guy of poetry
and we snuggled up and divinely kissed
at the edge of the performance piece where
everyone was hanging out with animals
in a stable after my art show in which
I gave away my painted pillows at the end
of the day to the people who all worked
together to clean up — my audience
participation begins with passing out
bottles of milk and sometimes pouring them
for people at long tables of imagination —
sheep in the other room and I am reminded
of the memo to sing sparrow song — two
phrases syllabic with a cheeeee trill at the end 

People in the dream also included Charles
Bernstein, Katy Bohinc in the next palette
over, Marlene, Juliana in absentia (she had
to go back home after 2 weeks away said
her father) and by the way she's already
seen this show at Bard, way ahead of me,
also Lisa Eutsey runs past the window
trying to get to Jon's dinner with their pet
chicken with its healed head cut off who is
not supposed to be in the light so I catch it
— luckily it's all healed up, just ineffectually
pecks my hand with its neck    what the heck
I fell asleep again and woke with only those who can do /
those who can’t teach all other dream imagery out of reach 

 

 

 

 

Automatic Timeout of the Dream

I am with a group of self-selected
People who are together to go to
Their graves — I am holding Tracy
Bonham in my arms and realize
I still have songs to sing and I will not
Die today!  The others are astonished
At my decision — maybe I will influence
A few including my husband  — I want
to make an album — and Tracy says
she’ll help for free   there is a dying city
around me  crowded — flying, stinging
insects in the houses and a man throws
a stick at me when I call him out — the
stick is root-like, shaped like an Arabic letter

In memory of all the dreams I’ve slept
Through, gone back to sleep on and hence
Erased by layering — all of that unspun
Information which I value for so many
Reasons not the least of which is that
The dreaming cleanses my brain of all
the strain of Living — but better yet they
hold the Day in such amazing ways — the
strange Sieves and filters of the dreaming
substrate Collects itself to bare the weirdness
of the Family within me and around
me arraying Out — the elaborate architectures
of unknown Cities where I dwell in relation
 to so many others known and unknown

Poured into very strong stories each
part of which can be unfurled word-wise
and image-flow into rivered reels of
the underground story of my life
barely separated from the waking
the veil is thin this time of day — early
in the morning or late at night sometimes
paralyzed with the import and hyper-realness
of the dream to even write it down — I
do it since someday I will dream no more
and I feel like Yeats they are my visions
I can mine for images or messages or characters
Who are part of me — collaboratively
Not bearing the thought of losing anything

Of them when I was young and a dream
slipped by   I three-quarters convinced myself
that surely if heaven was real all of my dreams
would be viewable again — I pictured a room
in the checkout library of my mind — full film reels
dated and timed of each day’s dreaming
labeled for me to screen — sometimes several
from one night — including ones I had forgotten
I had ever had — Now I realize I thought dreaming
might stop once I got there (to heaven) and that
I would grow bored with only one life’s supply
of dreams no matter how amazing — and
wondered what would happen then — would I start
again?  In some other way  / in some other frame?

That, I guess, is how religions are born
but I tend to keep mine personal — the
word spirit reserved for what I sense
in other people I encounter especially
ones who can walk down the empty windblown
street and see the specifics of the world in
what could be said is a kind of heightened
filtering — an extra-awareness of earth’s
texture and vibration, the way light hits
the leaf or coat of another and the way it
all comes together when a phrase or word
blown by in new context or surprising
conveyor belt of song runs its
particular tune to be perhaps poured

into a compact film song like some wing
— All it takes is the will to attention to go
— Deeper into the meadow — take yesterday
for example — as we prepared to go out
into the day — a kind of pilgrimage in a way
— We listened to this song by a band once
called the Tea Cups or the Tea Set but
there was already a band named that so
Syd called it Pink Floyd — (I still don’t
know what that is) then Grandchester Meadows
on a path near our temporary home furled
out like a ribbon to the west and I cribbed
some of the lines to kickstart my non-rhyming
scheme to caesura up the spine of the page

 

 

 

 

During Lo how a rose 

With all we have and all we are 
We remember the dream of a peaceful world 

I float in water with corpses but do not die 
We light this candle with you all

Keep your lamps trimmed and burning 
A shoot of Jesse for the make of the earth 

As the waters cover the sea an ensemble 
Invites and rewards singing in parts 

Together in a wave of sound swelling 
As a decree goes out and it comes time 

To stand and deliver a heavy load 
Then take it up again in a new way 

Growth of the night plants in the hexenwald 
Abstract colored curving grids play songs

 

 

 

 

Sonnet

What are you trying to tell me after
I experience your birth death in a room
With pink spongy fleshlike material all
Around  — I walk out and wash it away

To see you there — you embrace me silently
I kiss you in the mouth but only in dream

So this is exile    Maybe do a
Free style translation of the Psalms
You may publish to the world they may ignore us

You call it meaning   I call it noise

Laurel  silence 
A line drawn down a country at random
Unknown to birds

Working w/ people who seriously know abt science   And imagination

 


 

 

 

[Lee Ann Brown was born in Japan and raised in Charlotte, North Carolina. She attended Brown University, where she earned both her undergraduate and graduate degrees. She is the author of Other Archer, which also appears in French translation by Stephane Bouquet as Autre Archere (Presses Universitaires de Rouen et du Havre, 2015),  In the Laurels, Caught (Fence Books, 2013), which won the 2012 Fence Modern Poets Series Award, as well as Crowns of Charlotte (Carolina Wren Press, 2013), The Sleep That Changed Everything (Wesleyan, 2003), and Polyverse (Sun & Moon Press, 1999), which won the 1996 New American Poetry Competition, selected by Charles Bernstein. In 1989, she founded Tender Buttons Press, which is dedicated to publishing experimental women’s poetry. She has taught at Brown University, Naropa University, Bard College, The New School, and St. John’s University, among others. She has held fellowships with Teachers & Writers Collaborative, Yaddo, Djerassi, the MacDowell Colony, the International Center for Poetry in Marseille, France, the Howard Foundation and is the Judith E. Wilson Poetry Fellow at Cambridge University.]

Copyright © 2018 by Lee Ann Brown, all rights reserved. This text may be used and shared in accordance with the fair-use provisions of Copyright law. Archiving, redistribution, or republication of this text on other terms, in any medium, requires the notification of the journal and consent of the author.



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