"Fever Dreams," by Valence aka Tyler Sirvinskas, third round poem in the Sedona Poetry Slam on Saturday, July 30, 2011.
from the 2011 FlagSlam National Poetry Slam team chapbook "Gossamer Outrage"
Photo courtesy of Tara GraeberValence will perform at the Sedona Poetry Slam on Saturday,
Nothing else calms me in these fever dreams but the passing of trains in-between delta wave sleep and the celluloid carousel vignette it brings.
Through the green-tinted Metra windows, dark nimbostratus soothe my fearful heart,
and the nervous fever follows suit against the glowing pavement — moist and soon to frost, cobblestones along the parkway shine from lights that dot the fog. As the benches dampen in the rain, I know we forget the womb for our own good, sighing lonely splendor for love that we have lost.
and I’ve lost just enough to know what’s worth keeping, it isn’t what most think but the things that keep most going are the first things to go, I go it alone so I think I would know this.
and I know the edge of these lips should end with joy, I remember how the arms of my grandmother make me a child
and while the memory takes my open, swinging hand as lovers never would, dancing Campanula warm my soul, the empty streets...
Nothing else can paint the skyline vista from atop the Gothic steeple’s snowy shingles,
hidden watching revelers through warm-lit window panes, trading in organic eros all for Nike’s wings — but when I dream, I’m walking off that Metra at dusk, trailing daylight’s last venture like the stepping stone path to a boyhood home,
and in the garden I watch the roses grow at the tombstones of prior eras’ chosen,
and I’m hearing dead voices sing beautiful things
sing like parking garages echo sounds of life outside
sing to try to form their human hands into a heart-shaped cradle
but most people don’t listen like the streets are empty anymore
the child speaks,
and I actually listen
to what the world sounds like
and whispers to him
Nights he stares out the window
to watch the leaves skip ’til they sing him to sleep
and I waltz to that rhythm with ghosts down the street
where weeping mortar mausoleums make for timeless prose;
where the bones are mere ephemera
where this earth is open-armed,
standing testament to victory
as the night gives way to dawn
your bones still bear the memory of purest sunlit womb
know your life is but a memory, a dream that ambles on
Copyright 2011 © Valence Tyler Sirvinskas
Tyler Sirvinskas, aka Valence, is a poet among other things.
Valence has been a slam poet since 2010 and new to the format of slam, but not to the art of writing.
After living 14 years in Chicago, he has spent six years and counting in Arizona.