What mattered most in the dream
was the quality of blue in the water
so that it wasn’t about the naked young man, my rival,
doing handstands and backflips into the canal
or any wince of pain from contemplating in reverse image
the hammered remnants of my own body.
Like the perfect alignment of sailboats on a blue sea,
between the world and the world
the canal made a corridor
for whales and the white refuse of icebergs
to drift between familiar department stores,
the takeaway, the news-stand and the corner pub.
Suddenly how far away from death I was,
standing alone and speechless
before the waters of the sky,
that the depths go on shining.