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06.04.2020, Jamal Tuschick

I was sitting on a platform high above the jungle

Dream Poem

I know what you're thinking
it's dull unless they're sex dreams
dreams about violent murders
mine are pretty banal
I dreamed I wrote a poem
beginning "Hi!" and ending "See You Later!"
the middle part was amazing
that's the part I don't remember
I was sitting on a platform high above the jungle
this all feels really familiar
probably from something I've seen on TV
I was dressed up as a witchdoctor
and used this stick of judgement
taking back the names of creatures
restoring them to myth I was doing wisely with it
in my dream the poem didn't have
this assonance that's creeping in
after I'd taken back everything
I kept hold of my stick using it
to designate the categories that really matter
while adding bones and wings to my hat
sitting up here out of danger
I hate this/I like that

© Sam Riviere 2012, used by permission of the author and the publisher

Sam Riviere was born in Norwich, UK, in 1981. In 2010 his poems appeared in Faber New Poets 7, his first poetry collection 81 Austerities (Faber & Faber), which won the Forward Prize for Best First Collection, came out in 2012. He is also the author of the poetry collections Standard Twin Fantasy and Kim Kardashian’s Marriage.