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Circulation Analysis

Author: poem of Raymond Carver Type: poem Views: 15

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And all at length are gathered in.

                            --LOUISE BOGAN

By the time I came around to feeling pain

and woke up, moonlight

flooded the room. My arm lay paralyzed,

propped up like an old anchor under

your back. You were in a dream,

you said later, where you'd arrived

early for the dance. But after

a moment's anxiety you were okay

because it was really a sidewalk

sale, and the shoes you were wearing,

or not wearing, were fine for that.



"Help me," I said. And tried to hoist

my arm. But it just lay there, aching,

unable to rise on its own. Even after

you said, "What is it? What's wrong?"

it stayed put -- deaf, unmoved

by any expression of fear or amazement.

We shouted at it, and grew afraid

when it didn't answer. "It's gone to sleep,"

I said, and hearing those words

knew how absurd this was. But

I couldn't laugh. Somehow,

between the two of us, we managed

to raise it. This can't be my arm

is what I kept thinking as

we thumped it, squeezed it, and

prodded it back to life. Shook it

until that stinging went away.

We said a few words to each other.

I don't remember what. Whatever

reassuring things people

who love each other say to each other

given the hour and such odd

circumstance. I do remember

you remarked how it was light

enough in the room that you could see

circles under my eyes.

You said I needed more regular sleep,

and I agreed. Each of us went

to the bathroom, and climbed back into bed

on our respective sides.

Pulled the covers up. "Good night,"

you said, for the second time that night.

And fell asleep. Maybe

into that same dream, or else another.



I lay until daybreak, holding

both arms fast across my chest.

Working my fingers now and then.

While my thoughts kept circling

around and around, but always going back

where they'd started from.

That one inescapable fact: even while

we undertake this trip,

there's another, far more bizarre,

we still have to make.

Anonymous submission.


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