Inside a dream, there’s no description,
No painter with bright oils and canvas
Surveying a shoreline of mangroves
And mosquitoes. There’s no one to whom
The dream happens. The face that stares back
From the mirror has not been born. If
There’s a beach here, no one’s ever stretched
Naked on its sand, listening to
Sea birds shout at each other, flash white
Feathers between one wave and the next.
The clock has yet to be invented.
Men point at the sun, try to think of
Words for how the world happens: the black
Wind that moves across the sunset sky
When fire meets water and air turns cold.
At such times, is the mind dry or wet?
No pair of eyes regards the tilted
Palms or shuts their lids against the glare.
A dog squats, shits in the parking lot.
The dream exists but not the dreamer.
George Franklin’s most recent collection, Traveling for No Good Reason, won the Sheila-Na-Gig Editions competition and was published in 2018. A bilingual collection, Among the Ruins / Entre las ruinas, translated by Ximena Gomez, was also published in 2018 by Katakana Editores, and individual poems have appeared in various journals, including The Threepenny Review, Salamander, Typishly, and Cagibi. A broadside from Broadsided Press is forthcoming in 2019. He practices law in Miami and teaches poetry workshops in Florida state prisons.