The queen of half dreams
Lillian Fu | Art by Christy Yu
comes to me on the edge of sleep and she tells me i can’t stay long as she sinks me into her river kingdom and i watch her through the liquid as it rises above my face and fractures her features like so many half-held breaths. and she tells me not to blink like always and she reminds me i can’t stay long. and i try like always. and her crown tangles in my hair and her fractured body morphs into cranes that swim through the sea with glass wings and jewel beaks. and i try like always to do as she says and like always she tells me my time is short and her voice is soft like down and perfumes the water around me with the cut of its sharp edges. and infinity has always existed in the briefest moments. and the queen of half dreams is the queen of the in between which is to say she is the queen of brevity which is to say she is the queen of eternity which is to say she comes to me on the edge of sleep and takes me to where i wish to be and tells me that i can’t stay long. and like always i try not to go too far and like always i try to keep my eyes open as she swims the sky in her dozen bodies and weaves her crown jewels through my hair. and she tells me that she is just the queen of half dreams which is to say she is the queen of half nothing which is to say she is less than nothing which is to say i can’t stay long. and i try my best. but like always my eyes begin to sting and
i blink her stars from my lashes and she is gone and i am asleep.