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Two Poems
Recurring Dog

In the first dream, the dog is disguised as a cat.

In the second dream, when I pet him, the dog turns into chocolate.

In the third dream, the dog is a ball of dirty yarn which I scoop up
and lay over my chest to muffle the sound of my rapidly beating heart.

Recently, I was surprised to discover that the idea of “care animals”
has caught on even in the dream world. Apparently, these nocturnal
service animals have been trained by totem-leaders in the collective
unconscious, to gently nuzzle sleepers who show signs—tossing,
turning, twitching, grinding—of experiencing particularly gruesome
or humiliating nightmares. But they do it with sweetness and finesse,
so the person isn’t forced to wake abruptly—instead is gradually led
on an invisible leash to explore more pleasant terrains before morning.


Slow Chalk

I believe in the angel of
if not progress,
then process.

I pray to the air
that carries words away
to an outer being
made of possibility.

I believe in the resemblance
of unrelated things
uniting them as family
beyond blood.

In the university
of the universe
all books are holy
as light     and night

and the livestock of languages
penned within.

Elaine Equi’s most recent book is Sentences and Rain. A new collection, The Intangibles, is forthcoming in fall 2019. Both books are from Coffee House Press.