Justin Ehrlich

Sweet Dreams

Her ghost flapped in the midnight oil
Alarmed by clamorous
Knells ringing patiently, I combed
The webs of spurious
Dream substance from my forehead, bright
Strings smouldered on my hands
As I picked up the telephone,
Her shallow breathing grinds
Through the white noise... 'I'm sorry if
I woke you but I'd like
To see you one more time before
These pills I've swallowed take
The strength from my lungs.' I said, 'I'm
So glad you called, I can't
Wait to see you.' The haggard door
Creaked open; I lost count
Of the directions of her eyes,
The egg whites harmonized
Intuitively with her flesh
Of faded primrose dyes;
She fell down and said, 'It's okay
I never land on my head.'
Her willowy frame draped about
My arms on the way to bed,
I set her down and couldn't let
Go; She talked of the small
Things seriously and explained
Them in detail, and all
The while I listened carefully,
And understood, and held
Her silently; She said nice things
Discreetly and compelled
Me to shine brightly, when her heart
Of dancing phosphorous
Exploded from her eyes, she died
In plumes of Hesperus.


I dig my claws
Into the earth beneath
The blossom of your impressions,
When night has fallen
Miniature shoots grow
In the sunlight of concentration
And climb around my fingertips;
Curious purple grapes
Ripened, and as I rolled
Them on my tongue,
Obscene patterns emerged
In the intricate
Lifeline of the tendrils;
Fearfully I tugged
At them but they clung
To my flesh loyally,
And I could not separate
Myself from the gnarled
Of your intentions.

Justin Ehrlich © 2010


On the velvet
Precipice of slumber
Exotic murmurings
Trickle in my ear and spill
The moment I turn my attention.
With one eye opened,
I blamed myself
For all manner of suspicion;
Quaint peninsulars
Of luminous algae
Emerged from the damp
Patches on my pillowcase,
Mosquitoes hatched like particles
of a shattered light bulb,
Rallying in the aftermath
Of an electrical storm.
I rolled over abruptly
And refused to scratch my neck.


In my prayers
I gambled with the devil
And counted the winnings
Of every form of madness;
The scars of reason
Floated before my eyes
In burning patches
Scored by the lovers gaze
Of a sphinxlike sun.
As I scraped lifeless ash
From pregnant tear ducts
Darkness crumbled
From a ruinous moon,
And I swam intoxicated
In the sea of samsara.
When I woke
On the sodden mattress
Of a citrine shore,
I felt like a different
Person; recalling
My hallucinations
With feelings of tenderness.

Justin Ehrlich © 2010