A Prick of the Conscience: Shakespeare in a Dream

 

 

By: Michele Habel-Coffey

A Prick of the Conscience: Shakespeare in a Dream

 

As Banquo was a prick of the conscience

So am I.

Holinshed’s Banquo rewritten, reimagined,

In a Shakespearean consciousness

Upon the lips

Of the sweetest

Dream.

There Banquo lives.

And breathes.

His heart beats true.

As Banquo was a prick of the conscience,

So am I.

Dream of me.

Romance by Edgar Allan Poe

Romance, who loves to nod and sing,
With drowsy head and folded wing,
Among the green leaves as they shake
Far down within some shadowy lake,
To me a painted paroquet
Hath been—a most familiar bird—
Taught me my alphabet to say—
To lisp my very earliest word
While in the wild wood I did lie,
A child—with a most knowing eye.
Of late, eternal Condor years
So shake the very Heaven on high
With tumult as they thunder by,
I have no time for idle cares
Through gazing on the unquiet sky.
And when an hour with calmer wings
Its down upon my spirit flings—
That little time with lyre and rhyme
To while away—forbidden things!
My heart would feel to be a crime
Unless it trembled with the strings.

Early Sunday Morning by Edward Hirsch

Image

I used to mock my father and his chums

for getting up early on Sunday morning

and drinking coffee at a local spot

but now I’m one of those chumps.

 

No one cares about my old humiliations

but they go on dragging through my sleep

like a string of empty tin cans rattling

behind an abandoned car.

 

It’s like this: just when you think

you have forgotten that red-haired girl

who left you stranded in a parking lot

forty years ago, you wake up

 

early enough to see her disappearing

around the corner of your dream

on someone else’s motorcycle

roaring onto the highway at sunrise.

 

And so now I’m sitting in a dimly lit

cafe full of early morning risers

where the windows are covered with soot

and the coffee is warm and bitter.