Note: This poem is best viewed on a Desktop Computer with widescreen.

The week before he was born
I dreamt only in blue, 
like paint names the images collect
at the foot of my brain

Water’s Edge, Cloudless Sky,
          Swimming Pool Blue, 
Veranda Blue-Blue. 
                                                                         Water travels faster than the body,

propelling it forward—a protest. 

Always different, the kinds of blue

water crashing through our living room window, 
                                                     barefoot in an alley in the rain. 

Always different, the kinds of blue
not unlike the shade he was born with,
the shark blue when he came out. 

                                                               A nurse announcing:

          Your baby’s life is in danger

you need to push 

                                                         Death rides alongside the body. A fortune 

cookie decision. 

Is he alive? I asked 
       …yeh, my husband says 

because if he said it, it would be true.  
                                                         When he lies, he looks left. The
whites of                                                             his eyes,

the blue. 

But I wasn’t in the room. 
I was on the lake—
goddamn Lady of Shalott, 
the boat filling with blood, 
their voices 

falling off a dock

                             Is he breathing?
                             I am breathing for him,
                                                                                    the tiny balloon
                                                                         filling his body with air
                                                                                    pumping him in and
                                                                         out, pumping up and 

                                                                         down . . . 

Did you ever dream you were drunk driving? 
          And wake up in a car? 

                                                     Did you ever dream you were drunk
                                                                      and not wake up at all? 

When a doctor lies, it is a diagnosis.
When a husband lies at a bedside, it is a promise,                              a
a dream somehow 
                                from the


Photo by Jong Marshes on Unsplash

Abigail Templeton-Greene

Abigail Templeton-Greene is the author of two chapbooks: An Avocado Slowly Falling, a collection of bilingual poems in Spanish and English, published with Dancing Girl Press and Prayer from a Magdalena Jail Cell, published by Finishing Line Press. Her work has been published in McSweeneys, Calyx Journal, RATTLE, Pilgrimage, The Wazee, The Mom Egg Review and many other journals.