YOU KNOW this street, you're safe, but
somehow the hushed houses, tilting
trees, bent shadows look unfamiliar.
You find your apartment, approach
the door, a chatty neighbor kid
trailing you. But your key, it doesn't
fit the lock. Maybe you don't live
here, says the kid. You try another
door, and this time —relief—the key
slides right in. You notice all the lights
are on, Frank Sinatra's voice purring
in the living room. Did you leave
music on? says the annoying kid.
In the bathroom, there's a young
woman in white scrubs. She's tending
three bodies on stretchers. Still
bodies—much too still. Who
are you? you demand.
Sanan, she replies. But I live here,
you declare, pushing the hardness
of the fact in her placid face.
Not now you don't, she states.
In the basement, you tell your story
to a cop, who nods politely.
When you begin to shout,
he gently places an open hand
on your chest. It feels like a bird,
warm and fragile. I'll look into it,
the cop tells you. Which stirs
more anger. Upstairs,
in the bathroom, you hear Sanan
tell one of the patients, Don't worry.
This place is now ours.
Dear Morpheus, The Glue That Is You
Dos Madres Press, 2023