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Sunday, February 12, 2017


by Peter Krass

Caricature by DonkeyHotey

We get up from bed, but can’t be awake.
This must be a bad dream, a nightmare,
though sunlight burns behind the window shade,
a car’s engine growls back at a dog
taking its first morning dump
and the overhead neighbors clomp across the ceiling.
If only our thoughts could rise to that elevation.
Instead, they lie on the floor, then sink lower,
unable to stand, let alone walk.
Even pajamas no longer see the point.
Why bother getting dressed? they ask.
Coffee reminds us of other nightmares,
ones from which we could shake ourselves awake.
Also that dream of a gushing waterfall,
beautifully treacherous, alluringly violent,
and when we awoke, the bedsheet cold and wet
with embarrassing urine, leading us to wonder
if that were the beginning
of our own ignoble, feeble decline.
That must be what’s happening now,
the end of a dream, the start
of an ending, a crisis in formation,
this time involving everyone and something
even worse, more disgusting, terrible.

Peter Krass is a freelance writer and editor living in Brooklyn, N.Y. He teaches creative writing at The Writers Studio in New York, and he recently served as poetry co-editor for a forthcoming issue of Epiphany that will celebrate The Writers Studio's 30th anniversary.