[Editor's Note: "[I Dreamed, I Slept]" is taken from a manuscript entitled Mary is a River and is written in the imagined voice of Mary Magdalene.]
I dreamed, I slept.
I traveled into the folds
of the earth and my hair thinned
and my body, until I became more
breath than form.
Only then did I begin my return
to the light that filters the world.
Speaking like this, thumbing for a stem of truth,
is like trying to find a fossil.
I locate the ridge where the vertebrae was,
blow away dust of stomach,
epistles, a village, and what
is underneath is not so much a body
but a movement, a drum of the blood.
I step in again, become a river
stirring history’s silt, sliding over
stories slick with sludge and with moss.
I’ll have to wear them down
to before I was.
Before he was.
Before we humans moved out
across the land in rivulets
branching up and over
the cracked hand.