To My Roommate

Usually, when I play your music, I use your stereo
Not that you'd care
But tonight I am playing
your music in my stereo
And somehow, this seems significant
This is the first time, I think, that you have fallen asleep
so much earlier than I
You are sleeping without motion
Your stuffed dog's ear flaps
When you breathe in and out
Your face, to me, looks like my sister's -- 
I feel the same
desire to protect your dreams as
I feel of hers
Have I told you everything yet?
Already, it seems, you know my life, you know me --
I have told the story of my life with a two week exposition
Let our story begin --
We slipped into a comfortable
domestic routine so quickly
without pushing
Making coffee depending on
who has the earlier class -- I only make it on Tuesdays
and Thursdays, when I'm gone
before you can form a coherent
sentence
Were we friends at first sight, or just the same person?
You cry out in your dreams --
You fret and pull the comforter over
your head
I want to shush you back to sleep, 
but the home/school line is still foggy -- to disturb your
subconscious would be intrusion
You've been having bad dreams --
You haven't yet told me all
your stories
Your watch beeps every
hour, on the hour --I know this well.
You're beeping, it's 3 am
in four hours, you will
pull yourself from your
green meadow bed
slowly, like pulling a Band-Aid
You will make coffee -- I hope --unless you oversleep
I will lie in bed, aware
of your morning doings but not
doing anything yet about my own.
Tonight we timed the dance of the stars together --
tomorrow we will eat lunch
together and very likely nap
in the afternoon
we attic nightowls, closet hypochondriacs
we need our sleep
I will ponder, as I do every day, 
how it is that I was randomly thrown in a room with you,
who were my best friend
by sunset


4 September 1998

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