Academy of American Poets
View Cart | Log In 
Subscribe | More Info 
Find a Poet or Poem
Advanced Search >
Want more poems?
Subscribe to our
Poem-A-Day emails.
Essays by Miranda Field
Going for Motherlode: on Adrienne Richís Of Woman Born
Sponsor a Poet Page | Add to Notebook | Email to Friend | Print


by Miranda Field

No mortal ever learns to go to sleep definitively.  No baby, animal or 
vegetable, intends to sink his vehicle in so soundless a lake.  In such
cloudy houses, shadows take the shape of something "put to sleep." Any 
oblivion is a field or maze a creature grazes in for private reasons. The 
edible flower taken from its bed to the table expires on your tongue, and
this is what we mean by sense of night and utterly internal to itself.  

To go to sleep, I think of the bodies in their reservoirs, painstakingly
changing from opaque to phosphorescent.  How all the while distracted
Nature pours a perfect solvent on their experiment.  I take a half-pill, a
paradigm ignites, a moving sign in rain.  I take a whole, the flame grows
lower.  One and a quarter, itís just a flicker.  No sense asking who I am
then.  Swinging from its dead twig in a bush, the aura-like cocoon, lit up
by winter sun— the least of its worries the worm.

First published in Columbia. Copyright © Miranda Field. Used with permission of the author.
Larger TypeLarger Type | Home | Help | Contact Us | Privacy Policy Copyright © 1997 - 2014 by Academy of American Poets.