The Sandman's Soliloquy



a poem about sleep, after Wallace Stevens' "The Snow Man" (prompted by Tweetspeak:

(image by Jackie Morris,


One must have a mind of sleep

if she is to know dreams –


accept the rendering of temporary dark,

eyes dipped in ether, turned upward

to the mysterious afterlife

from which we all return at morning.


One must give up fear of rest,

the full stop and lying down

with silent feet and fingers pointed

toward Sartre’s being and nothingness.


Let the burden of restless thoughts

be bound in an ancient holy book,


housed for a season in yesterday’s

dimly lit vault, where still

it fades, brought out to read in the Divine

office of the waking soul at distant

appointed hours ---


Let present hours be dealt like moon

cards, a rummy of night royalty, counted

and played in no particular order

on the mind’s rented table,


all the players wearing dark glasses

to hide their secrets.



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