The doctors at last made us love sleep.
Awake, I can only stagger, polioed, a foal.
My console glitters with text, with faces
that don’t seem to be aging anymore.
There must have been a birthday recently.
I click Read and move hand over hand
down the chilly railing, see Jenkins
and Lopez in stasis, not remembering
whether those names belong to them,
to anyone. The showers stink of lye
but I love them anyway, love scraping
the chemical vernix off my skin. It’s only
32 m. back to my pod, but I run
into Murphy (or Murray) on the way.
We manage smiles as we pass. We
have only spoken once. “It seems
our cycles overlap,” she’d said. “Oh,”
I said, “I never noticed.” (I had.)
Piped-in Mahler plays me back
to sleep. Home is a song for piano
and strings now, etched in copper,
a score for what we know not yet.
GERARD COLETTA was raised in Boston and currently resides in Brooklyn. He writes greeting cards for a living.