The truth is, I was waiting for it to happen:
last night, I dreamt a dream in which everyone
was wearing a mask. I had gotten a job driving
a city bus on routes I didn’t know eleven hours a day,
and, also, I was a singer. We were masked
and distanced, and then, we weren’t masked and not
distanced enough. I was trying to hit the notes and find
directions on Google Maps and all the while the tension
was how to stay safe, what decisions were going to be
ones that cost me.

As a freshman in college I took art appreciation—
a lecture hall filled with yawning kids in sweatpants.
The instructor projected a painting on the screen
of someone lying on a cot in a prison cell.
Above him was a dream bubble depicting
someone lying on a cot in a prison cell.
It’s probably famous—this metaphor of defeat—
maybe you know it, maybe the painting exists
in your house—glossy, oversized page in an artbook,
beautiful and rarely opened on your coffee table.
Maybe you took that class with me. Reader,
if you know this piece, do not write to tell me
the name of the artist.





Photo used under CC.