David Kinsey

Sleep On It

It’s that dream again. You know, the one with all the honey and grandfather clocks, and time is ticking in viscous strands. The sky is falling but it’s all papier-mâché, just spit and newspaper, your sweet nothings and I told you so’s. I’m holding your hands and you ask for them back, but I hide them. You think I gift wrapped them and put them in the mail so they can surprise you on your birthday, but it’s nothing but rain, snow, sleet and hail here. You think I swallowed them so I could make a knuckle sandwich joke, and now that you mention that I wish I did. You look down and see that I’m wearing your hands, and you know I did this so you could feel what it was like to be me, but these dreams aren’t about empathy and cheap world play. They’re about you, they’re always about you: you in motion, you descending a stair case, you smashing into me. You can be anybody here in my dreams, anyone I wanted you to be, but you are always you. Your angles. Your vectors. Your wheeze. Your coarse breath against a cup of coffee and a stack of pancakes. We’re at your kitchen table and I’m holding your hands, but this time they’re attached to your arms and I like them better there, that’s where they belong. The food is getting cold and coffee is counting down the minutes, but there will always be more coffee and pancakes. It’s minutes we’re running out of. You know I’m a big dreamer and this one right here is the biggest I’ve had yet, so let’s start boiling water and beating eggs into bisquick. Let’s never wake up.

Haris Adhikari

On the poem 'Buffalo dream' & remembering my maternal uncle

The poem “Buffalo dream” is the result of how I eventually came to realize that the supernatural might possibly exist in a world next to our understanding, and that is why, it occasionally makes claim of its presence in many weird forms like dreams and natural signals.

I remember the Friday night of Royal Massacre in Kathmandu, Nepal. The night was unusually still and covered with almost all red, burnt clouds with some clear sky patches all across – peeping below. Also, it felt like it might rain. My brother’s friend Madhav and I were amazed to see such an unusual manifestation of nature while we were discussing literary theories and postmodern poetry on the roof top of a five storey building late that night at Anamnagar. The same night had witnessed the never-imagined assassination of all members of the Royal Family.

Likewise, traditional Nepali belief about “buffalo dreams” is that somebody close is going to be taken by Yamaraj, the ruler of the underworld. Buffalo is his ride that comes to give signals of death. And this is exactly what I myself saw… and was chased in the dream – buffalo dream.

The day after next day I saw the dream, my maternal uncle left us all.

It is further interesting that my aunt’s daughter Karuna, as she said, had seen a few people dragging long, fresh green bamboo plants in a dream one or two days before he passed away. Such a dream is taken as very ominous in most Hindu communities. (They use fresh green bamboo plants to make a stretcher for the dead body which they first wrap in a white shroud and place it on the bamboo stretcher and carry it to the crematorium, followed by mourners in the procession.)

I find it further more interesting that such and such inexplicable dreams or signals hint at the supernatural power, most often through the means of cultural beliefs and practices.

Sara Basrai


They peer in at the window.

Just another barking crazy mother
dissolving in a flat,
single with 2 children failing,
yes? NO/ yes/ NoYES/No/YES…
we could go on, but we know
the answer is – tick.

Washing erom up, plates, cups, pans.
Suds, she’s pretending bubbles are snow.
She blows. Snowflakes pop
into glass-wearing eyes.

They say as they peer,
“Do/be more, mother!”
(school/ government
bourgeois wo/man
“We're in competition
with other nations…
Put on a nice yellow dress.”

alienation is natural,
she once read when it snowed
so deep the glass vanished.
She’d finished the puzzle
in Sunny Daze Haze.

She always enjoyed word play.

Now she withers
melts, drip-drips, pop-pops
with the suds
No Erom. No more.

They walk away.