Wishing it Was Just a Bad Dream

for artist and breast cancer
activist Hollis Sigler
1948 – 2001

You’re a lump in bed.
Fear like fever draping
your feet

Blood pumps twilight
over the city
beating its drum
under your skin

For years
you have lived
embraced by the dream
her birds casting
shadows onto
your sleep

For years
you have slit open
life’s seams
colors now running
as wounds
from your fingers

How that dream rises
fierce from her fall
her dress flowing crimson
and torn at each arm

How she whispers
from the tall cosmos
in the garden
the scent of July
still on her breath
promising chartreuse
and bouquets of time

Like a mother
she’ll stroke you,
leaving you crippled
clutching your breast

Like a lover
she’ll probe you
reaching the marrow
igniting each cell to hot
candles of deceit

She comes tonight
purse in hand
all zipped in truth

As curtains blow open
and quiver with blue
and glass doors unlatch
to drift out like wings

And let her in.
You breath in her perfume

And let her in.