By W. Jude Aher

A dream broke out through the corner of a long shadowed back-street. A voice thought to retreat, and yet held quiet in its own darkness. Blocks away, do the children play. Uneven adult roles mark cracks in the concrete world by which these children see themselves. Black leather marks the long folds of man's eternal insecurity, writing the faces of these children seemingly onto walls beyond their world. But how often do these edges always face so hard in. And something always seems to begin, on the start of an end. All the bends of death, and never are they shown how to find the shadowed room, for rest. And at best who tries to die.

Often quiet, and always there he walks the streets. Repeatedly he looses his shadow to the nothingness, beneath the closed glow of street-lamps. And illusion rides always so near. He belongs to no one, as of that shadow who can never remain. Stains cry beneath his feet of blood and defeat. Are they seen or still owned beneath the dream? Hard lines across his face allude always quietly to the retreat of eyes, of tries living beyond the ties that hold concrete onto concrete that mirror faces onto faces. A strange man or child who with a passion ignores all the keyless locked traces of places always previously owned. Is it the night he tries to own so alone, a world where shadows might be found. Turning around and around and sometimes even moving a little.

Deeply long into his own soundís sight, he blows on his harmonica the blues, not of circles but of reflective movement through sunsets in amber release. Wanting someone to hear, he wouldn't dare to care even a little too much. Keeping his eyes closed most of the time for the sight. Trees match his blues on the strength of a hard city's wind. Hair grows in a long statement down his back, drawing a track whose reach is for freedom. And such an open scream, but that it is a scream. It means more then a philosophical escape. Is there a place where one and never anyone might be? Echoes of a lost teacherís voice spill sociological views of what reality. Where or is it really who can we never be? Or might it be a question of reality?

In the mirror of their eyes he remembers so long ago, how often he cried, for what or really more. But nothing ever held more, for can it, to a child who is forced through cold steel and concrete, to open his eyes. How well does he remember that now his tears are crystallized and dried. And they tell him that it has all been tried, with history as the vice holding all single-man dreams closed. On the question of lines between illusion and screams, motivation has long since torn. And now his blues reach long into an always city wind in night.

A city wind shifts, while a lone rain drop drifts long down a window-pane in glass old. Time displaces or just faces itself in the mirror of a man, who stands unseen. Moments of green, are they illusion in rhyme? Markers float aimlessly in the presence of here on the quest of a now somehow, seemingly always more then itself. And snow upon concrete is but a dream.

Blood cakes upon itself in the broken shade of a renegade tree. He tries to crawl up to his knees and all too easily falls back down. A child lying deep in this man wants to cry, but never finds release. He holds aside his struggle to regain his self and sinks slowly into himself. Moments flash as the rashness of inflicted death spawns reality through the ache of pain. No one survives to remain near by. All the faces of brotherhood and its sporadic traces refuse to match into the gain of here. A second is clear before delirium removes his body from his mindís screams. But his screams reach through never the less. And no rest for the dream that lies broken in all too many places of time, lasting and always on the move.

Pause. Always Pause!

Cause yourself.

Motion the wave of your hand towards those all reaching mountains you have never seen.

What do you mean!

Pastures of green through a concrete door. Hold her closer once, for she drifts away and all that remains are; what are pictures in stay.

Beyond day, streets turn over to carve their names with the lights of peopled voices across the moment of night. The sight is of children grown grouping themselves between concrete and a dream. Street-lights announce a stone corner one step beyond itself. Guitars string into music and rhythm explodes into a continued moment beginning. A female feels her breasts stimulate against her shirt, and listens through her body towards an oceanís staging surf. Drugs mating with dreams tear open freedom between hope and screams. The dance takes hold.

He wanders the streets, never stopping for the reach of names. He passes by the games and maybe himself. But not. Lone trees offer him shadows to question. And the shadows draw a maze of life through cold steel. Time peals and yet he still ignores. His pocket empty of change holds only his name. Or maybe another. An old man caked between dirt and stale flesh wind lies defeated, but not, never, dead across his unseen path. His eyes cringe but his body just shrugs and steps in still silence over him. You see he does exist, but on the same owns no face by which to trace himself across any now and so breathes the decay of a city. Music questions him from behind the marked wood and glass in paint door, to catch him in a turn of his face, or eyes to see. And a door stands closed. His walk faces a halt in its movement as he becomes aware of a girl leaning alone on that step crossing into those doors. She was small, but more then a child. Black hair fell uncombed between her face and the long of her back. Her skin was strong in its youth and marked the bones of her hips above low wasted pants. Her blouse was the mere illusion of a dress in red, drawing her breasts naked. Her eyes ignored him, as easily as they ignored themselves. But a long face noticed him as he stopped and turned its wide mouth towards him. Swimming in another reality then her own, she motioned a slurred hello out to him. Who caught his smile, meaning what? They met for a moment, somewhere for neither of them to see. Remaining with her wall for support, she didn't even try to see him. She just wanted. And he bothered no good-bye as he walked on down the street. And with his first step she was swallowed by the street nightís living shadows.

His hand rubbed itself in a reflective action in the dirt, in reaction to a throbbing pain. He tried to adjust his position for just an inch of added comfort, but there was none. And as quickly he returned to this glimpse of wilderness, he was gone.

He could just see her figure waiting somewhere among that small crowd gathered across the street. But he had no intention of crossing. He knew she could break away to meet him without him having to break off his walk. Someone waved, but he cared less for its face, and made no movement to trace it a reflection. In the corner of his eye, he saw her emerge from the crowd. Waiting. His fingers opened till they held hers, closed as they continued on in silence. As he felt her near something turned down upon itself and spoke their voices to him. Startled he stopped to face her on the momentís silent demand. A thin echo of light brought red soft into the reflection he reached for, in her sharp green eyes. She spoke back to him without reflection or was there something more. Her lips held his neck just before they reached through to his.

Sitting on the steps of a church, where with night gothic, they were drawn away from religion and into a long drawn reflection of two people holding in a sea beyond time alone. As she smiled to him she saw that wanting of more still growing in his eyes. She wanted to talk of tries, but fear crossed her love. As she could see him somewhere, ever so far away. Time turned back onto itself, a strangerís voice again reminding him of here. Where had he gone, but he could no longer remember. All was her presence so warm in pulse, long against his side.

In two rooms above a store he sat alone in the center of a blue deepened rug.

Three candles held him still to himself through the form of a pentangle never unseen.

And somewhere he knew he could never believe what he didn't mean. But all he did meant more, at least to himself. Midnight was left behind and night fell to silence for the reflection he sent to wall his circle. His body rocked in the mood of, at first simply a flow of himself with himself. Phrases of others pass across his thoughts, but he would let nothing of himself go unseen, as without what could the flow mean. The void is a mirror only in the reflection of substance alive. Intricate is the eternal web of a self. Void against void implants illusion.

Leaning all his self onto a face he knew as he, so he leaned hard against a place he could never name. He dreamed for the force to move, and so saw himself move. His body, now lying out upon the rug, breathed long breaths upon itself and eternity, locking him into the matching strength of his reach. And so reaching he was there. He pictured the mountain below him as he passed. He pictured time as a tunnel of reach. He pictured her within his reach. Something spoke from behind him, but he forgot and didn't hear. So near, was he near to her? He had to touch. He spoke his word, and touched her fingers. She grew flesh but as suddenly grew into a long black robbed figure motioning to him from the distance. He laid out his hand before him in reach so this figure appeared to move nearer. He could soon see it seeing him, but their reflections moved separate as both moved closer. As he yearned to touch this figure of someone there, so he found his own aloneness increased. Then suddenly they met alone and she was all he could find to name this place. And both simply as more so, were. Something spoke between that moment and his staring into a wind blown candle, breaking open the circle around him.

He could remember the figure but never for long. And so returned his thoughts back to the first woman of whom he knew. Hearing her so far, a continent away, he knew he might never know if she would dare to take his reach. But it didn't matter. For she did. And the somewhere within him, who demanded that he make a moment of his reach into eternity to touch her? Or why? He glimpsed this quick thought of a woman in black and wondered, just wondered as slowly he returned just to himself.

As always after, he picked up his harmonica and sat in his deep chair that faced the window. Through an open window, across a fire escape in steel and the hard concrete city he played his blues to the wind above. Remembering his youth; remembering that young woman he loved so freely and so wanting.

He woke staring up into a short horizon. He stared up a sharp hill carved of almost bare trees and large marked rocks. The sun owned the sky clear. His pack lied thirty feet off to his side. It was half opened. Clothes and a can of food lay half out touching the earth. He thought about trying to rise, but felt fear in the crossing of himself with his bodyís pain again. Moments passed and he remained conscious. He heard the echo of a hawk making motion somewhere off across the sky. He reacted by turning his head in search. Forgetting pain he began remembering himself. And the minutes pictured himself against time slowly turning clear. Suddenly he was near and as suddenly, he was back. Slipping, was it possible to love someone so long gone, so beyond any real, the child turned and the man moved. As he tried, he slowly rose. The pain reached him, but as he came to stand, so he won, remaining himself. Wavering, he turned and remembered. Quickly he looked up the hill to see if she remained, if she was ever there. Was she simply of his own making, the reaching of his own soul in black. Paying who back and for what?

She stood across the room from him, built small and thin. She was quiet now, which was, a moment of her life she rarely showed him. A moment she never showed anyone, at least in its original movement. And in these moments, she was never young. She was beyond the edges of woman, never past but more then a child, and somewhere deep beyond. Layers of earth held her and reflected a long free piece of sky. He wondered how much of this moment she owned and how much owned she. And then she smiled and was with him again. The softness in her green eyes were again hard as she picked up the poem from her wood stained desk. How she loved that desk, the thought passed across his smile, matching its course. Of course! She never read her own poems once written, but always let him. Or needed, almost a question he always quickly forgot. Un-thought he took her hand as she handed him the poem to read. And she waited with him, never quite for a reaction, seemingly more for a presence. For his presence? To himself;


who might dance in the rainfall of


carrying fingerprints in a side pocket

growing small

whispering talks to oneself-

of times long lost-

or not so long ago-

but lost all the same

and names the present - but

into the confines of a name

on a board whose spin

is a circle-

if itís all the same

shall i demand more

crossing the floor, one touches

no one-

meets a mirror - just to lose

a reflection-

reverse direction and repeat

the same-

"but name is the name of the game"

;cries the silent fall of rain-

When he finished, she held her silence as he always reacted verbally and then never mentioned the poem again. He turned to her still holding her hand, maybe a little tighter, she wasn't too sure. He wasn't smiling, but she knew he rarely did, and it was a reaction to himself and not particularly to her poem. For he never really did. Except maybe when he played and then too much became too vague. "Be careful of your dreams." A break in the hard of a smile met her and drew them together in a short kiss. Short only because she was still somewhere in child form, with parents, with yesterday too close to all the calling demands. She knew the questions were never just her, if at all? She clasped his hand for movement, and to feel him there.

So much later that night, they were together down a back-street by the church. Off to the side where the street ended into a wall was a small courtyard, property of the church, of course. Trees hung over a small winding path. Both had lived most of their lives in that neighborhood and had never known of its presence. His mood was not so lost to her this night, but he couldn't stay still. And so they walked. Their touch in hands between walking feet held such a deep silence that the world was slowly drifting away from them. And this they shared. Over a six foot black iron fence and suddenly they were in a place where, they what, the earth matched who they were. His need slowed and they came to a small only stone bench in white, held small within and not. Rarely did he talk but for this night. She held to him more then would she listen. There was an echo of wind streaming, behind a scream in his eyes. He held no movement for tries, no sighs. He held her. Funny and he loved her. Turning to himself he felt her. And he knew he would make love to her, with her? As did he see her.

She held no hand away from him, in this night. For within her was a strangerís feeling of loss. And in that loss she felt him close. She felt him touch her somewhere beyond her flesh, mesh through her love or needs and touch her. On a moment in the freedom of a hidden garden, she fell silent behind a question of more. With his hand upon her breast she forgot her body and knew his feel. Feel moving through feel. Something was suddenly as real as she, a poem born she knew. As they had touched before, so had she feared for her flesh, but she passed from behind into now. She didn't want him, she had him. Time shifted aside and they rode into one another. Neither were daring to think through words. They were losing such solidity for something more, as if the blues played for real, as if the wind played on their nakedness, and night was only their mirror. They touched for a moment through their bodies.

Met in a Dream.

Met in a dream..

Met in a Dream!

Met in a Dream?

Both woke tied to a cross of fear, all too deeply unseen.

He blew out the candles, and rose to leave. A Black wind still drifting across his soul. Its lines no longer discernible as words he couldn't grab. Feeling long from himself and maybe too close, he decided to go for a long walk. As did he whenever he yearned, or maybe needed is a better description, to talk.

It was still early in the night, but the town was small and whenever he walked its streets at night so was he brought through the flash presence of the city in where he grew. Wind blew and as his hair rose into a soft reaching scream to match, so was he returned to now in a reflection of he. Places were but places. All that was left were himself and the faces. And even these, slowly lost their traces of find across his momentís flight. But all these faces who never quite leave. And she, will he never lose, but who as he could barely remember her name. So rarely did he think of her, did he have to face her ever quiet presence somewhere within his living dream. And how easily did he choose his scream.

He turned into the stillness of a shadow knowing not why. (Always somewhere left to try. And what circle how close by.) He saw movement down the alley behind him. As through the shadows a Black robed figure matched his stillness. He looked still wondering if he had seen anything, till he noticed the stillness growing deep, of something seeping close to him, into him. He turned into the alley, but as suddenly turned away, in so caught a breath of stillness.


Somewhere lingered between.


Deep in the forever of her dream she remembered him all too close. In the closeness she could but reach to him. And as she reached she heard him reaching, speaking something lost to her sight. A half-written poem slept with her that night. She woke late that night, but just fell back into sleep while, red seeped quietly across her eyes lately ever deepening in the darkness of their green. She remembered wanting to scream and fell back into the dream, so. She saw him walking alone across a ridge, thought she heard him call from somewhere else, from behind. But all the same she reached out to where she could see him, there upon the ridge. Almost touched him, her hand a shadow upon him. He startled and fell, turned just past the moment to see her. Death flashed across the trace of her shadowed hand, in the shade of crystallized ice. Her movement froze in the slow of his fall. But who called. His hand reached too late? and she was frozen from movement. And she woke beyond a scream not quite forgetting something she couldn't quite remember. Late in the night a poem was written within a quiet light. And the child stirs within her.

Blood is dried on his hand, and eventually he finds the cut barely healed on his head. Blood is also dried into his hair. A throbbing slowly subsides. And so he sat back down. Not wanting to move, he wanted to savor the stillness of a dream just beyond his present reach. Or was it the reach he wanted. His knapsack now lied next to his feet, as so he must have moved, silly thought, or so he thought. He started repackaging that which fell out, when his hand fell upon some paper. It was the poem she had written to him just before he left. As he reread the poem he remembered her, and maybe, just a bit of himself was almost lost somewhere ago. "IN WHITE STONE" the title fell across his lips, and there he tripped upon himself.



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