William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Tag Archive for ‘Sleep’

The Ancients

The dream I was going to write this morning has evaporated. Last night, it was so vivid when I awoke that I was sure I would not forget it, especially since I stayed awake for several minutes afterward. Or was that interval of waking also part of the dream? Just as I finished writing the last sentence, I heard a cat screeching somewhere in the darkness. There — there it […]

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Burning Candle

Burning Candle — March 5, 2010

Lunch. I’d just fallen asleep on the floor in the back room when I heard a strange noise — the sound of a hanger, perhaps, falling for no reason from the wooden rod in the closet and banging against a bracket on the way down, or of a penny committing suicide by throwing itself into an old cider jar half full of its tragically expired brethren. Awake for the nonce, […]

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Fishing

Sleep is a boy fishing on the last day of summer — then school begins.   Fishing I am fishing now, in a stream that has followed me down from the big sky at night, muddy and rippled with stars. My shoes are dreaming on a rock, full of fine wet sand. My clothes have begun to doubt me, but my hat is a mile wide, a meadow yawning in […]

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Yield

It seemed almost rude last night to close the front door while a cricket was singing just outside. And yet a short while later, ready for sleep, I could still hear it, steady and measured, through the adjacent bedroom window. In less than a minute, I could no longer distinguish my heartbeat and breath from its rhythm and song. And I thought, the first and last word in all human […]

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Heron, Cricket, Moon

At one of the ten falls, up a side path through leafy shade where ferns and moss and piggyback plants abound, we came upon a great blue heron standing at the pool, statue-still. Noticing us, it turned its head, and seemed somehow to become an even taller, leaner bird, as if it had pulled its feathers more tightly around itself. Sorry for our intrusion, and hoping not to frighten it, […]

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This One

If there is a spirit world, why not this one? Late yesterday evening, the crows half-flew, half-drifted every which way on the southwest breeze, which was strong enough to make their frequent treetop landings a challenge. This one? No, this one! Here? No, over there! Haw! — and yet the grand and glorious silence was never broken. The clover was drunk on sunlight. Now it’s snoring in the dark. And […]

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No Foothold

My first thought this morning: If I slept like a rock, it is a rock that dreams. My second thought: If I slept like an angel, it could mean anything.   No Foothold No foothold on the brooding rock, or memory of the climb, only joy in stepping off, and these awkward wings of mine. Recently Banned Literature, August 7, 2014

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After I Sing

Out listening to the birds before sunrise, gazing up through the shadowy scaffolding of the greening trees as I walk, I am witness to the natural cycle of waking and sleeping according to the light, and its restorative, medicinal benefits. Artificial light, clocks, television, alcohol, caffeine — one must wonder about a race of beings that works so uniformly and effectively against itself, that sees sleep as an obstacle, and […]

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Jung and Easily Freudened, Specimen 1

I used to have dreams about work not done. I was behind on the farm, I was late, the necessity and importance of the job had completely slipped my mind. An example: suddenly it was April or May, and I realized I had forgotten to prune ten whole acres of vines. Always, or almost always, the dreams culminated in a feeling of guilt and shame. It has been many years […]

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