Where You Are by Eileen Sheehan
by Steven McCabe
You lie down in whatever bed
you lie down in, the pillow accepting
the weight of your head, the mattress
receiving your body like a longed-for guest.
You move in your sleep and the sheets
react to your turnings, the blankets adjust,
shaping themselves to your outline. The air
in the room keeps time with your breathing,
accepts being displaced while I circle the walls
of the city you dream. My papers
are worn, frayed at the edges; that picture
I have of myself, clouding-over and spotted
with rain: my face is dissolving before me. The night
holds you in sleep, you are stilled by its comforts;
by the fabrics absorbing the sweat you expel.
My cries go unheeded as I stand at the gate
pleading admittance. There is no one to turn to
as you shed a layer of your skin while you lie there,
dead to the world; my one reliable witness.
Where You Are was first published in The Watchful Heart: A New Generation of Irish Poets (Salmon Poetry)
Eileen Sheehan is from Killarney, Ireland. Her collections are Song of the Midnight Fox and Down the Sunlit Hall (Doghouse Books).
Illuminated cave arts!
Hi Sarah, Sort of like that!
Your compositions are always a surprise…multi-layered in an unusual way. Like you are playing with time….and cultures. Even alien cultures.
Cat scratches from this afternoon mixed with the patina of an ancient dream …or is it one we haven’t had yet?
I get happily lost in each one!
Hi j.h, I relate to what you are seeing…I created solstice images to address a poem not about the solstice… and yet… Light as a dividing line. The poem’s dichotomy: inside the event & outside the event simultaneously. I was inspired by the imagery in the poem (a city dreamt… for example) to create an ancient overview at play…at that dividing line where time blends (and the poet sees)… thank you for these thoughts about image and process.
Gorgeous…. (and I lack any words beyond that. Forgive me).
Thank you Stephia for the vote of confidence…sometimes hearing one word keeps one fuelled.
I love this poem and the aesthetics of Eileen’s work. Sometimes I think collaborations are inspired.
And new voices enlarge the meaning. So I’m happy with your one word!
Pure magic Steven…
thank you John…..I think it worked, these words and images, and if there’s magic so much the better….much appreciated.
Two artists on top of their game. Wonderful.
Thank you Mike!