“And then Amethyst, Emerald” by Bethany Reid

A recurring dream of red rooms.
Beneath carpets elaborate as tapestries —
I search for my daughters,

red and gold giving way

to cerulean. My youngest daughter
hides behind a chair. Her older sisters

swim too far from shore, amethyst
and emerald waves, daughters dangling their legs
in lustrous surf, teasing

a glittering body of water, waves

like rows of teeth. Where are my daughters,
the little one drunk with hiding? Spilling

like paint, the blue seeping over
the dream, layers of green and blue weaving
into the carpet’s mesh. Emerald

and amethyst waves unfurl like carpets,

carpets not for sale, but as if for magic,
abracadabra, Alikazaam—

carpets to fly away on. How like birth
this is, red womb, eyes stinging
with blue as we blink,

as we wake in the wake of the dream.

Bethany Reid’s most recent book of poems is SPARROW, which won the 2012 Gell Poetry Prize. She blogs at http://www.bethanyareid.com/ and lives in Edmonds, Washington, with her husband and daughters.