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Dream Song 101: A shallow lake, with many waterbirds

Dream Song 101: A shallow lake, with many waterbirds

A shallow lake, with many waterbirds,
Especially egrets: I was showing Mother around,
An extraordinary vivid dream
Of Betty & Douglass, and Don—his mother’s estate
Was on the grounds of a lunatic asylum.
He showed me around.

A policeman trundled a siren up the walk.
It was 6:05 p. m., Don was late home.
I askt if he ever saw
The inmates—‘No, they never leave their cells.’
Betty was downstairs, Don called down ‘A drink’
While showering.

I can’t go into the meaning of the dream
Except to say a sense of total Loss
Afflicted me therof:
An absolute disappearance of continuity & love
And children away at school, the weight of the cross,
And everything is what it seems.



Poem Dream Song 101: A shallow lake, with many waterbirds - John Berryman