A Truth of Blood

“Eurydice” by Alain Le Junter

A Truth of Blood

What harm? Men die — externally —
It is a truth — of Blood —
But we — are dying in Drama —
And Drama — is never dead —
Emily Dickinson

The dream done, my eyes open,
it hurt to be awake.

Outside my bedroom window
faint predawn light seeping
through the dark fabric of the sky.

My late wife had been alive just now,
in the dream her death merely a dream.

I had held her in my arms,
explaining to her that I had dreamed she’d died,
but she hadn’t, no, she was smiling,
warm, lying next to me in bed,

so lifelike, so palpable,
I thought as I lay there afterwards
that her spirit had come to me.

I closed my eyes and fell asleep again,
and, as if in a new episode of the ongoing series of my sleep,
she reappeared, sitting in a chair in an unfamiliar room.

Not smiling now, possessing the wisdom of the dead,
she explained in her soft Georgia accent
that we were out of synch,
that our ages no longer matched,
and it was true, she was young again,
in her twenties, but I was old and stiff.


I rose from bed,
and looked down upon sleeping Caroline,
lying there beautiful, a breathing angel,
her hair luxuriant, disheveled, cascading
over the pillow that she embraced,
like a lover in a Leonard Cohen song.

The light strong now,
the sky outside the window bright blue,
my dead wife, like Eurydice,
tumbled back into black oblivion.

I struggled into my corduroys,
puddled on the floor next to the bed,
and tiptoed out, quietly opening
and closing the bedroom door.

Descending the stairs,
I shook my head, waved my arms,
to buck myself back
into the land of the living.

Time to brew a pot of coffee
and retrieve the morning paper,
which lay where flung,
next to a clump of lantana,
the newspaper sheathed in plastic,
protected from the dew,
which had evaporated, had disappeared
into the seeming emptiness of air.