Sleep is a liquid,
a black crude oil
fringed with rainbows.
By day we drink it in,

mix it with memory,
sorrow and mandragora,
fuel to burn and shudder
in midnight’s engine hall,

Jerusalem of dreamers
and our absent selves.
They reach out with our senses
to hear the linen whisper,

to feel the too-late fingertip
caress from the cold side,
and leave us with the always new
loneliness of waking.