May/June 2015 • Vol. XXXVII No. 3 Nature's Nature: A Gathering of PoetryMay 1, 2015 |

Swampland. Bog. Mare aux Songes. “Sea of Dreams”

Allison Hutchcraft From So Legged and Footed Swampland. Bog. Mare aux Songes. "Sea of Dreams" but the translation slips. I think a song to sing before the singing's done, a mouth rounded out like a coin. The history books all say the same thing: first there was the mare then a man who went wild in it, found it was a shallow pool of bones, whole birds submerged, black beaks and flightless wings. How he tried to gather them up like wheat in his arms, like a woman with sheets. Can I catalog what is not mine to count. Can an island slide off in my sleep. To dig more bones. That's what the men were hired for. They found them with their feet. Out into the swale of that swamp, stepping waist- deep, water like a seam. Then all the battered hollow limbs, the caved-in skulls, lifted toward the light. What lets me dream when the world keeps rolling out like a map at both ends, this side curling, that side warped.

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Allison Hutchcraft’s poems have appeared in American Letters & Commentary, Barrow Street, the Beloit Poetry Journal, Crazyhorse, Cincinnati Review, and elsewhere. She teaches creative writing at the University of North Carolina–Charlotte.

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