Archival Features, Poems

Kary Wayson: “In the dream you leave me”

This poem tries to describe a recurring nightmare where I catch whoever I’m with — I mean with-with or partnered to — I catch that person in the act of physically betraying me — i.e. having sex with someone else. The worst part of this is that they don’t deny or try to hide it — whoever it is (and there have been many in this role) just looks at me with dead uncaring eyes while I wail or plead or otherwise exhibit grief. This poem holds pride of position as the last piece in my as-yet-unpublished second book.



In the dream you leave me


it’s always for another, and you tell me

while she sits in your lap.

I’m facing your blank affectless face: you’re unbothered by my silent spastic opera-


In the dream (I can’t speak)

the worst part is

as in life

pleading with the dirt.

At I should say, not

with, but if

I could ever (I never) get further, I might

in defeat

relax. By giving

everything (hope I mean) up and you —

are as if an hour had passed.

Kary Wayson‘s poems have appeared in Crazyhorse, Narrative, The Nation, Green Mountains Review, The Best American Poetry 2007, and the 2010 Pushcart Prize anthology, among others. Kary is currently Writer in Residence at the Richard Hugo House in Seattle, WA.

Additional work from Kary Wayson appears most recently in the Winter & Spring 2015 issue of Poetry Northwest.