Thank you for helping us celebrate the newest season of The Waking.
In the dream, I pull her up / from the lakescum and swim / us back to shore. It’s hot, air thick / as maple syrup, and mosquitos feast / on any flesh they find. Our bites bleed / blue as we lie in the grass / littered with ducks begging for bread, / quacking at our Wonder Bread toes. Eyes shut, our hands clasp / in the space between us, hands / still stained from picking blackberries / from brambles, still sore / from the pricks of all those little thorns. / And it haunts me: this dream / where she lives, where it’s not me / Because, in this dream, / it’s not me / not me / with my back turned, not seeing her / splashes turn to thrashes then to nothing / at all. Here, the sunrays slice / the sky, drying our silted skin. Our bodies / refract sunlight, her blonde curls so light / they’re nearly blinding / white / as the curls locked in the locket / I’ve worn around my neck ever since, / the one I’m clasping in my fist.
Despy Boutris's work is published or forthcoming in American Poetry Review, American Literary Review, Copper Nickel, Colorado Review, Prairie Schooner, and elsewhere. Currently, she teaches at the University of Houston, works as Assistant Poetry Editor for Gulf Coast, and serves as Editor-in-Chief of The West Review.
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