husks (the dream doll)

Standard

if what wakes you
from dreaming
is hungry

my grandmother would say

to make a husk doll
from leaves holding close
to dry cobs
of braided colored corn

soak them to softness
and braid cornsilk hair
darkened yellow to brown

keep her faceless
not as punishment for beauty
as the no-face dolls for playing

but no nose for this dream-holder
made of husks
to scent and steal sweetness

do not give her eyes
to see where she is planted
to walk her way back

do not give her a mouth
to whisper your name
to what moves in the earth

saying your flesh
is better eating
than her leaves

bury the bad dream
and walk away lighter

those imaginings
shaking you awake
wrapped inside that husk

and no longer in your heart

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