What would it mean to close her eyes and doze off
Into the choral voices she will never remember,
Incapacitating, erasing age and awareness, solutions, and powder,
Lending her ear to a vacuum and seal her lips, devouring her nightgown?
As her feet appear and reappear across blue grains of stellar sand,
Dragging her weight, evaporating, resurfacing, through the sound of her mind,
She lifts her leg and holds it dear, identifies it as her own, and can’t smell the fire,
Everything she steps on starts to sum hymns and disappears as soon as her foot jumps.
She pulls her hair to make sure she’s there, curls it around her finger, red,
And tips her lower lip with the sickle crowning that flowing finger,
Through dreams and death, sleep and unrest, she meets immortal cacophonies,
Stones on her eyelids, swarming left and right, floating on a swamp, crystallise.
She’s too young to be in there, to be visited by these invisible brutalities,
To be spoken to when her mind erases the word expressed as soon as it is uttered,
Her head on a cushion is a dangerous thing, to thrive without a memory,
The voices gasping for a vessel, mortal, an instrument aligned, nebulous interferences.
“La Vérité” by Jules Lefebvre (1834-1912)