I woke up from a January dream,
late in the month
when the outside wind sounded like
it could peel back the tree bark
and pull all the warmth
up out of the frozen ground.
When the spring felt too far off to believe.
The scent of the dream
dripped from the fragments of my night,
circling around me
like drops of color in a stirred water glass,
running together in an world of
I lay still and struggled,
trying to hold the senses of sleep
and find my way back.
For all that it felt vivid in my mind
I could not grasp its memory
Could not tell the why, or how, or where
of a story that was only solid
at the last edge of vision.
Recalling it to my waking self
was like grabbing handfuls of smoke
out of the air.
Even as I thought I felt
its shape and weight,
and believed that I could
listen for its lessons,
my dream fled for good
and left me alone
in the dawning of a winter day,
able only to ground my feet on the cold floor
and go out into the world without it.