Ocean


Jack Litterst | August 2018



I am an ocean...
I don’t how it happened, or when, or why...
It seems that I fell asleep...
And in that recess I broadened and rolled,
I filled troughs and furrows
And wept down into the trenches
Like an unkempt animal.

I was filled with all manner of small tumbling people
And dreaded monsters.
Bits of dust with teeth, with hands and bony
Fins for riding crosscurrents...
And slow, incalculably slow,
Impossibly slow goliaths, all-the-time
Drifting up from shipwrecks,
Drifting down from tangled lines
And that strange surface-glint...
And I too drifted
Through a sleep that
Held a bit of fire, a sense of crawling,
A descent through loping corridors both
Pleasurably swift,
Electric...
And fiercely comfortless...
And relentlessly dark
And unnerving.

I was watching the world through the vexing eyes
Of stormclouds,
Of jellyfish and seaflies...
And feeling it through infinite limbs
Like flourishing cilia...
Which crawled down throats
And through bodies,
Which drifted on the air tingling
And numb,
And dissipating and resolving...
They lingered at the edges
Of holes, underground,
And those holes held torches
Which exhaled,
In tantrums, in deliriums,
Without plan or parry,
A luscious,
A sumptuous heat.
I was coated in oysters and rays…

That dream seemed to extend a long while...
A daisy-chain of days and nights
Threaded together
And distended,
As a school of fish below the surface
All nibbling at tails...
Its end came in increments which I could not
Measure or detect,
For a blurry quality pervaded everything.
I was distracted and distractingly warm
And pleasured and at peace...
A long pause that folded me into its belly,
And held me close...
It receded like a tide but immeasurable,
An inoculation,
And waking I found that I was everywhere,
Seemingly I was everywhere…











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The Dust Magazine is a 501-c3 nonprofit organization under the umbrella of Moab Arts Center and run entirely by volunteers. We rely on business sponsorships, reader contributions, and donated submissions to continue the mission.


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Interested in contributing to The Dust Magazine? Check out our submissions page.





The Dust Magazine is a 501-c3 nonprofit organization under the umbrella of Moab Arts Center and run entirely by volunteers. We rely on business sponsorships, reader contributions, and donated submissions to continue the mission.