Dusk on the Lake of Dreams


You can lie down now.
The daylilies are drooping,
their petals drunk with sun and bees.
The shadows of trees are growing longer,
pulling the covers of evening over us.
Whatever it was you were striving for,
consider it done, perfect.

Lie down, knowing
you are going to float
effortlessly in your small boat.
The Lake of Dreams is a quiet place
right next to the Sea of Serenity,
and the seas and lakes of the moon
are calmer than any earthly bodies.

The daylilies, Hemerocallis,
were named for two Greek words:
beauty and day, the lifetime of each bloom.
Lay yourself down, knowing nothing
more needs to be done just now:
new lilies will open in blue dawn
of their own accord,

like your fists gradually unfurling.
So as dusk rises up
over the darkening land,
let this one day end in peace.
You needn’t remember the dreams,
only let them bear you safely
over the dark horizon.


Margaret Holley’s fifth book of poems is Walking Through the Horizon (University of Arkansas Press). Newer poems have appeared online at BluepepperEclecticaGnarled OakThe Tower Journal, and Valparaiso Poetry Review. Former director of the Creative Writing Program at Bryn Mawr College, she currently lives with her husband in Wilmington, Delaware, and serves as a docent at Winterthur Museum and Gardens.