Jane Adam


i’m reading a story now about
being sleepy about soap &
toothpaste & night things
night land the night stand
covered in candle stubs
i’m making a dream path through the book--through
empty mugs drying teabags
shredded kleenex  cat pills lotion dribbles
incense ashes
dust & dust

i’m in layers of wool
pullover pullover cardigan
horsehair hoopskirt bustle corset shawl
keeping it at 59
degrees that is
warm for a victorian
the people who built my house were
never ever nude
& they still sleep here

there is nothing to do
this late at night about
some piles of books or papers or
the margin of dust & fuzz & hair
--human, cat, or other--
on the floor along the walls or
food that’s been in the fridge for 3 or 4 months
whatever’s behind the toilet
belongs to the earth again
to the sleeping victorians
parts of this place are
not even mine

i’m walking a narrowing corridor of fuzz &
the corners get older & deeper & thicker &
dreamier & more secretive
the antique darkness spreads into the center &
this is it
the only time i have to understand it:
on the edge of it & i’m



eternity in an hour
violet hour
eve has left the brain that won’t believe
never fits a corner or shows use

idols and ambergris and rare inlays

when i am dead my dearest
envy’s foot
rare works
every eye

enjoy’d the lady
ribs of the earth subsist frail as breath
true, it is said of our lady, she ageth
hours and long hours

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