THE WHITMAN ISSUE
WHEN SLEEP IS ABOUT TO OVERTAKE ME
When sleep is about to overtake me, my eyes heavy lidded, my limbs
yielding and soft, I hesitate, wondering at all that is alive that I am
about to leave.
As though I held a mirror to my face and my brother’s face, my
dreams reveal me though I am reluctant to surrender.
I have passed through dark waters. Starless nights have come upon
me in an accumulation of clouds.
I seek only that in all my dreams and the dreams of those about me I
am fitful and awake.
I seek the light that visits all but those who are overtaken, that
animates eyes, ears, mouth.
I seek the brightness of those who are awake at every hour.
Since Rosemary Klein was eighteen, she has, in one fashion or another, understood the world and herself through the largesse expressed in Whitman's words "Do I contradict myself?/Very well then I contradict myself,/I am large, I contain multitudes." The founding editor of Three Conditions Press, she edited The Maryland Poetry Review for fifteen years. Currently executive director of the Maryland State Poetry & Literary Society, she has been a resident at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. Her poetry manuscript The Absolute Heart won the New Spirit Press quarterly chapbook series in 1996. Her poetry has appeared in numerous literary journals, including Hampden-Sydney Poetry Review, Negative Capability, Puerto del Sol, and in several anthologies including Prayers to Protest (Pudding House Publications, 1998) and Intimate Kisses: The Poetry of Sexual Pleasure (New World Library, 2001).
To read more by this author:
Rosemary Klein: DC Places Issue
Rosemary Klein: Museum Issue