I dreamed my father lived in a hallway,
painting clothes; hiding prose and
a cell phone between lucky strikes. counting
down the hours spent awake, and not
counting at all, days spent asleep.
he was younger then, stronger then, eyes opened
at the edges then.
I saw him planting tones, speaking vowels, reading
words everyone loved to hear. but he stood there,
showing me and
only me his knuckles- painted red like a sound
that covets the tongue; displacing meaning,
displacing what it can.
I turned and stole his pack of smokes-
his words they could not see me-
and, plugged them into the
wall for a chance at unfiltered communication.