The showerhead downspouts ideas
with relentless percussion
while I stand in a steam
more jazz club than tub.

This is lucid dreaming
awake beneath a storm I control
Here I intuit new remedies
for life’s old poisons.

Out of water, a thickening:
I’m dazed, grasping for things
I hold in my hand – glasses, keys
I walk into furniture, forage
under cushions for relief against dread.
I’m distracted by the thought
that my indoor cats are unhappy
in their domestic confinement,
terrified by the thought of nine lives.

I wonder, was there
something good about my mother?
Will one of my cancers return?
Should I get a dog?


Elaine Schear is a writing instructor. Her poetry and prose have appeared in The Boston Globe, Pearl, The Bellevue Literary Review, Jewish Currents, Poetry East, Mudfish, Blueline among others. She is founder of a non-profit organization supporting the aspirations of talented, under-resourced public high school students in her area.