At dawn, visitors from the farthest stars enter the open door from the balcony, silently, stand, muse, stare down at the sleepers, and weave about the bed entwining figures in the air with spruce boughs, in one hand, and in the other, rattles, making no sound, only stirring the air, rattling the walnut's leaves beyond the door. Slowly one foot is lifted and brought down heavily, then the other, the thunder from the stars to earth heard only in the dreamers' caverns. Footsteps and restlessness. In the slow confusion of waking up, the visitors fade from the room. The vestige of a memory of some great presence returns suddenly, fleetingly, later, during the day, the next, or another, the unintended, primordial, ever-recurring presence of Disturbance.

© 1977 by Kenneth Irby
Catalpa  (Tansy Press)