I should have brought a clipboard.
Note: four creases in the pillows.
Note: the sides of wardrobes and desk-lamps
bent back in a night not quite black enough: tough buffer-zones in a nesting-box.
There are twelve bars fizzing on the surface of a clock that imply the time.
Note: a touch, seeking a reach,
a meeting across some wires and seeing a cup of coffee I have not looked at since this morning
(it has a skin that will bow and crinkle if I press it)
I keep misspelling ‘imagining’ as ‘imaging’, possibly because I am typing too quickly, speed seeming like it should be of the essence, games a-foot in the pink-paged drawer-lining foxtrot tango of abbreviated rhythms.
I only ever seem to remember how to spell that word via mnemonics: r-h-y-t-h-m: ‘Rhythm Has Your Two Hips Moving’
It makes me think of a book on your shelf I would like to read, a book whose spine I would not bend back.
It makes me think hyphens are as important as mouths and eyebrows.
I look left when I am lying, even in mirrors and
I am seeing blue heat in the breath.
I know I could feel blue heat in the breathing but I am busy watching a pillow a desklamp
a clock-face a ward-robe a mattress a coffee a screen my eyebrows a bookshelf
that could be my eyebrows the sheets a chin a carpet an eyebrow an eyebrow
not dancing, I am watching
your not-dancing, I am imaging and noting to the new rhythm,
and noting to a nesting-box
noting down, the up-beats all beat-up:
Currently a Visiting Lecturer at Royal Holloway, University of London, Eley Williams is a writer and former deputy editor with The Literateur journal. She has been published in Visual Verse, Ambit, has a chapbook out with Annexe Press and was shortlisted for The White Review‘s short fiction prize 2014. This poem was submitted as part of the Poetry School’s Dream Mechanics Open Workshop with Tom Chivers.