Deborah Leipziger

The Alchemy of Memory

Of eons, dust, and ice you are made
volatile, I trace
your path through the solar system.

unlikely that I will see you again
memory follows me, an apparition --
jelly fish stinging the night sky.

memory follows us
engulfing, confounding
dissolving, surrounding.

for the fortunate, you appear twice in a lifetime
usually once
sometimes never.

Maybe what is left of us will make a comet.





I dreamed we entered a cave, you and I
With stalagmite fingers touching us
Water dripping into pools, echoing

I dreamed you lit a fire
And letters leapt out from the flames
Hovering over our heads

I dreamed the walls were full of drawings
ibex, lion, and mammoth
and animals now extinct

The letters from the fire
illuminate the animals
quivering and flickering in flame