A Closeness

by Graham Burchell

Because I’ve been dreaming of the carp I caught
(asleep at this late hour with its eyes open,
dreaming also perhaps in its muddied way
of an episode – a forgotten feeding trauma),
I feel ashamed.

That fish’s misted gaze was at the core of it.
I woke when I started to fill with water
tasting of moorhen, dragonfly larvae
and sweet corn bait.

Moonlight pales the railway-wall beyond my window.
Our heads are still less than a hundred steps apart.

Mine dents a pillow in a back bedroom
across a road from a track among trees
that curves to a consommé of broken leaf
and twig, to a blind chill of pond,
to an unlit moon down there,
to a pulse of gill,
and pout.