my awake mind is comprised of compartments

everything has a place

but sometimes there are these leftover words

phrases that skip through on repeat

I hear them in my dreams

tinkling ahead as I try to catch up to them

to capture them on paper

to put them in order and make them beautiful


sometimes I try to contain them

these merry, unruly words

that won’t let me sleep

they tumble and tease

so perfect in dreams, but blurry at the edge

of my orderly, conscious mind

and traitorous memory


I scribble imprecise phrases

hoping to catch just one

I read them outloud

intone them to my heartbeat

find their weaknesses and subtly refine them

until they bubble with emotion, hopefully balanced with fact

it is only when I’m sure they’re ready

prepared to be misconstrued

once they are outside the protection of my mind

only then do I relinquish control

release them into the world


after all, what good are words just for me?

these carefully constructed soliloquies

their purpose is to persuade and ignite

I believe anything they tell me

I want you to believe in them too