Saturday, August 24, 2013

Apropos of Nothing

In the vague time after night and
Before the morning proper, when
Silence turns delicate as glass,
The pitch of a scream raised us
Up and trembling, thick minds
Puzzling alone, then together -
Cat, child, stranger? Was this noise,
Noise, I mean, not sound at all,
The yowl of the undomesticated,
That fierce possessive war-cry:
Ancient, rough, undeniably limbic?

Or did dream turn rotten, mushy,
Foul, teeming with flies, or worse?
Was our assistance now required
At the bedside of one or the other
Man-boy, old by day, young by night?
(Years since we'd soothed sweaty
Skin, anguished eyes: years.)

We would not know the source
Of our awakening, not this time.
We lay back, fractionally appeased.
At least the sky would not fall.
Still we slept troubled, denied 
Long habit: make it better, fix it.
It was easy then. Now, it is this:
A noise - yes, never just sound -
No source nor provocation, and
Nothing to do but wait and see,
And fret, apropos of nothing.

4 comments: said...

Yup. That about perfectly captures that moment. Beautiful, Sarah.

V-Grrrl said...

"silence delicate as glass"

I loved that line.

Great poem. I know soon you'll go back to your day job and opportunities to write will come less often. I've really enjoyed seeing you post often this summer.

Kate Rivera said...

Heartily agree with V-Grrl. What a feast for our senses, your writing this summer.

Christine said...

I felt my heart race and my mind go to those dark place it can go when noise shatters sleep and dark silence.