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My Dreams Write Me Too; Break A Leg by Hibah Shabkhez

My Dreams Write Me Too

In daylight, I write down my dreams

And steal their power for story fens;

With the gauzy winter's day cheering

Me on, I wrestle the monsters still,

Throw them to an ink-quicksand that wills

Away their bale, makes me whole again.

At nightfall, the tables turn. Screams

Pin me down, wielding my own pens;

I am the coiled paper-scrip fleeing

Poems in full roar; I am the quill

Thundering forth galloping dactyls

Punctuated by a shortened refrain.

Break A Leg

Each stone of these stairs rasps like a regret,

Like the memory of a child's flushed face

Clouding with hurt, because of some unmet

Demand for a trifle, some homework help

With a spelling or verb form or math set

Refused in an already festering rage.

I negotiate descent with each step –

‘Don’t trip me up’ – and with my feet – ‘Don’t fall’ –

With a twisted desire that I may shlep

On, that this may be the last day for all

But me to live squirming in a self-wrought cage.

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