How does one
Fall asleep so deep?
How do you so swiftly stand at the edge and
surrender yourself,
Falling off head first
into the Marianas trench of slumber
While snorkeling
Into dark deep underwater caves,
breathing rhythmically
Counting Zzzzebra fish like sheep
In your sleep.

Sheets of seaweed twist around your legs
and pillows of sea creatures ask your head to cushion there.
You float among creatures
who have never seen the stars,
yet they mimic the milky way.

Descending further, darker
You dream fabulous
Undiscovered alien creatures of the deep.
They discover you in return.
With all this elaborate company
You are tempted to extend your stay,
To run your dream play to the end,
Odd as it might be.
It’s ludicrous
And it delights the senses.

Your dream reaches into a subconscious pool,
Tickling with suckers and tendrils
into any tiny space
and leaving gifts
of a fish dance school,
Each youngling wanting a part
in a candy colored nutcracker ballet
this winter.

I stay at the surface, awake,
My back to the stars,
floating in a romaine lettuce leaf boat,
one candle for company,
waiting for you to surface on your own.
As a precaution
I tied a thread to your toe
and the other end
I tied to my boat.
When the time comes, I’ll tug the silky strand
And ask gently for your return.
I’ll ask you to point your face
toward any bit of the moon you might see
and rise up from the deep.

Then you can tell me your dream.

Lynette Hensley