Between sheets and sleep

by Kelly Hillock, Features Editor

the words become dust in my eyes, showing you what I carry

with you, as you pry the heaving feeling from your chest

how can I tell you, with only sheets between us in this bed

how do you feel something much less than the heavy sleep

that fills this home.

please say you won’t go.


this is how we go

you whisper, with whispers that turn into the words you carry

until you put them to rest inside a paper-strewn home.

the words that remain inside your chest

a phrase you will only say to me in your sleep

but still I know who we are in this bed.


the ink of your pen spills onto the linen of our bed

and its unkempt quilts, declaring you won’t go

now I feel heavy (not with sleep)

yours brimming over into mine, now I carry

your words, your eyes inside my chest

ink-stains cannot replace a home.


the crevices of your body have become my home

but when the sheets stretch for miles in this bed

I will end up back inside my chest

tumbling, twisting for a place to go

instead, I find the places I carry,

the maps and memories that grow heavy as I sleep


with your bones pressed to mine while we sleep

and I’m dreaming of words we can use to build this home

maybe the words aren’t yours, maybe you don’t carry

articulated pens with you to this kind of bed,

but now you’re scribbling “this isn’t how I go”

carving it into my chest.


I dreamt you spoke directly into my chest

with half-closed eyes, half-asleep

I know you speak in realities that will not go

I want to hear your voice outside of our sheet-covered home

your eyes betray your sleep-secrets in this bed,

only to discover we always carry


our homes inside our chests

our chests with our home

we are together now, I know you won’t go.