Dream as Brenda Fassie

Artefact: The Mark Gevisser Profile, ‘Weekend Special Bites Back’ in Mail & Guardian, 01 December, 1995. 

This morning it’s hot
And she catches something
Or, more passive
Something catches her
An image lingering
For an extended moment
Above her head
Sweat-damp pillow
Red socks pulled high up her calves
Clouds pulling in
Promising a thunderstorm

Brenda doesn’t remember her dreams
They’re forever an empty gap
Between late-late and mid-morning
A colourless block that she can’t access
So she’s disinterested
Shrugs a dance-roll shoulder
No time for astrology or subconscious patterns 
Uses her waking hours for manifesting fantasies
In the world she can touch and see

She met someone new
She sees now
Someone shy, soft
Not skinny
Not muscular
Untaut muscles under warm flesh
Broad across the back
A real, non-dream weight stretched out
On an old chair in the corner of the room
Under creeping green, bright portraits
Arms on armrests
Honeydeep fingers, wrists   
Sure of themselves in their quiet
Smiling a lot
This person
Surprising her
They’re talking together
What about
Fading already
About lives, about cities
About growing up
About …
Not a battle this time
Not an irony
Not a harsh bitch putdown
No meanness in sight
There’s space between the words
Waiting to hear 
She realises, during the memory of the dream
Or the dream itself
That they’re flirting with each other too
Pulling in closer
This person is a quantum love
It comes clear, obvious, undeniable
A future love
A past love that never was
Could be
Coming back around as a reminder

Her hot bed-body becomes aware
Of the person passed out beside her
Skin tingles
Light pulling in through the pale brown floral print
Dragged across the view
Unsure if she can deal with the real of the dream
With the proximity of this other still-unconscious soul
Their deep-breathing so close
An eyelid-opening away from becoming a bleary witness
To the complex infidelity of her ghost-beauty
So she gets up
Slides off the mattress end
Goes to piss
Slap on the coffee-maker
Fake love
She mutters to herself, raspy
Head refuting
Every day is special