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It's four o'clock.


Get up get up lazy pillow hugger
The night stars are fading
the dawn stars are winking

just once

in the pale glow
of night sneaking off.
Dream ghosts are scampering away

If you bury yourself in the pillow
With your eyes squinched shut
You'll never catch the tail
of dreams or soul stories,
Never see night and day
pass through each other
to make mist
that rises like earth's panting breath.

Pillow hugger how can you live
without the first cascade of canyon wren?
How can you miss
the birth of a pearl sky
without oyster or sand?
Do you think you'll lose the dream lottery
if you get up now?

If you get up now
you'll win
the secrets of creation,
The shapeshift of night to day.
How can you ever sleep that away?



Erica Swadley
03 Jul 1998
All rights reserved.



Tiny Mite


For me you are a paradox,
older brother, never met,
faded pictures in a box,
a tender guarded secret
in drawers of memory
of pain too great to share.
Our mother stopped her tears
and covered up her care,
so that I never knew you
or loved your tiny face
or talked to you at bedtime.
At last, now I've found you,
shining fruit of family tree.
You heal our hearts by coming,
first in time to leave,
you return to bless us.
At fifty eight, I grieve
the voice never heard,
your wisdom, your touch
never felt, the empty place,
and parents concern, overmuch -
for every tumble, every breath,
fear that hampered my young years,
was measured by your early death.
Welcome into the circle
of love that we all share.
Do you know how I've missed you?
I embrace you now in prayer.


Your little sister, Erica



Shall our hearts meet
on a bridge of the river
Watching crumpled leaves pass under
Watching trampled lives passed over
by marching feet? a surface shiver
In the water flowing fast beneath
In the quiver of the river
shaking as a leaf
In the tremble of a lover
when his hand passed beneath
when her sigh passed beneath
Or was it just a leaf
on the surface of the river?


Erica Swadley




These poems may not be reproduced or copied in any way without the expressed written permission of the author. All poems are the copyright of Erica Swadley. All rights reserved.

Ces poèmes ne doivents pas être reproduits ou copiers en aucune façon sans la permission éxpresse écrite de leur auteur. Ces poèmes sont la propiété d'Erica Swadley. Tous droits réservés.


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