Nightmare

© Joanna Parypinski

Polished rocks like skulls on the shore,
wind-washed,
watch the hull of our dark ship
drifting
on watery dreams,

and I, Captain of Sorrows,
follow the current, watch the curved
moon, sharp
like a scythe slicing
through sea-black.

This is what nightmares eat:
blood of a gutted traveler
gliding nightward,

and I am steering starbound,
waiting for the moon to fillet me,

sailing on the tide,
wailing with the sirens in the gardens
of smoke.
The broken wind-chime voices
of the crashing waves
bear us home, sandlocked
on our island,
nightland—

we sing with the sirens,
shipwrecked,
wretched,
until the pink sun breaks
the horizon,

we sing
until our throats sting with salt,
we sing
until our drowned thoughts
float.

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3 thoughts on “Nightmare

  1. I never know what to say about poems because I don’t think I really understand what makes them good. Not like how (I think) I understand what makes a story good. In any case, this was interesting. I can confidently say that I liked it, even though I still don’t understand everything. Most poems are a little confusing, though……..Nice.

  2. I’m sort of in agreement with Mark. I see the image you’re creating–and it’s totally badass. I’m not sure I sense the tension, though. That’s my biggest struggle, too. Maybe the whole thing is a huge metaphor I do not understand… still, really incredible images, though, Jo. Thumbs up.

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