Rob Chalfen: poem

  Rob Chalfen

  23 October 2017 — West Gloucester

  JPR 08

  23 October 2017 — West Gloucester

poems composed in sleep but not written
burn in the firmament of memory like a vivid sunset
they deftly parse philosophical paradox
and limn the moon with uncanny inquiry
your philosophy dives beneath a long line of scholars
whose evidence prevents one from shouldering night
in quite so apt a fashion
these lines are gone but their shadows linger in evidence
some vermilion hint of dawn still adheres
to their retreating shoulders
you write down a dream but it is flatfooted
and encumbered, the soft violence of its meaning
locked in solitary confinement
you know those lines which once ruled in dalliance with slumber
were as fine as anything De Quincey wrung from silence
those few lines you saved were certain to survive the dawn
if only you had spoken them into darkness
and beyond salvation these unspoken spawn
proved futile against slumber’s majestic fall


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