Dreamer, your midnight river
is only navigable in an old
leaking canoe, a torch mounted
to the bow, casting shadows
across the fathomless surface
fluid ribbon of darkened waters.

Watching you sleep
it’s like studying a painting,
wanting to jump inside the frame
and sing a song
that will take you past
the hidden whirlpools and submerged rocks
crocodile logs so close
you could lose a hand,
the trees’ branches that hang down
a crooked web of already eaten fingers
against the sky.

But I have to trust
you have your own paddle
that will guide you through the mind’s
razor-edged maze,
turn your worries into flight
fears into freedoms
and imaginary worlds into
a smile
that shows the way
out of the river’s gaping mouth
to a place
where you can hear the lapping waves
before the morning’s first light

rises above
infinite sight.

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