fever dreams of an insomniac, lying next to you by Aidan Harvey

We are unsleeping.

Pick-axe eyes,
plastered rheumy,
bore into ceilings,
each passing of night.
“Awaken”: unsure,
did sleep ever find us, legs celtic knotted,
tendrils of hair veiling my vision –
or has this Witching hour
taken captives of us?

In moments eyelids kiss,
we apple-bob into unconsciousness,


with seconds
a lucky minute
of hazed half rest, cruel
false prophecies of dreams
never to come.

Traitor legs now push me away –
Judas reflex – into
chilling embrace of brick
& dulux charcoal;
painted grey, painted black
by night’s complexion –
startling skin clammed
by fruitless machinations of rest,
oh how we flop like a beached trout
about to get his head caved in with a rock,
how we wrestle duvets into choke holds,
wishing they might return the favour.

but when we slide back
from that amnesic in between,
back into whatever wan ray
can penetrate curtain fortresses,
you, always,
clutched to me,
the last raft out
of this sinking ship
of a hometown

& I?
Curled into a fist, foetal,
maybe – never
quite facing you,
never quite ready to
break through
whatever wall I need
to be free?
knuckle scars be dammed,
what’s one more angry white tally
to count with my fingertips
while I count down the seconds
until dawn advances.

Here is where we were made
in this bed,
in meetings of fire and sand
we melt into one, become glass
shatter. Ground by hours
down into – you guessed it –

Begin again.

Morning finds us
as night left us –
streaming eyes
boring into rooftiles
hoping, maybe
when they see skyline,
sun newborn, and mewling
we might know peace.

Follow Aidan on Instagram @AHarveyWrites 

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