Melissa Cundieff-Pexa


Because the rain today is baptismal,
I’ll confide I’ve dreamed of sin

all the way into morning
when light opens enough
to wail the clouds. I confess also,
the dream was physical, my stirring,
godless, until my body

looked more mountain than body,
craggy as the sky’s sad queen, and gray
like water’s eyes that will
the black and tangled lines of rain
to upset their cat’s cradle.

In this dream, we were pressing ourselves
together, like bookend geodes
slaked by history’s tumult,
drunk and tipped against the weight
of the present. You touched me
where you shouldn’t have,
and regarding you,

I touched back, at first evolving
the dark air, then, our strangeness.
We found it all erotic as silhouette;
I answered your dream mouth
with my dreaming body.
The next morning, it almost seemed to me

that waking might entail the end
of us, the beginning of forgetting.

Certainly, now, you and I
have been baptized almost to drowning,
to a private storm, and this dark-irised sky

gardens the prize of our bodies:

I think of my dream’s fine, brief hell,
that, as much as I should have then,
I couldn’t forget or unlove anything
I had done and would do again.