The Tower Journal

Jane Rosenberg LaForge

Dream Los Angeles

You asked me if I was willing
to go to Malaysia in my last
stage, the best kind, the most
restful. It always ends too soon,
this chapter, and then decisions
must be made. Get up or stay down.
I did not want it to end. I never did.
Your hiding inside of me vertically
as I organized dirt: into boxes, into
closets, into compartments as the
politicians do, a kind of roulette of
their consciences. Then we were
wearing raincoats but we were
unprotected. The leaks came
through the electrical fixtures and
the landlord was a jerk. I remember
how short it all was, the books
and the promises we wrote in
them; not just the dream but
the actual you-are-there reconstitution.
My heart wailed in my ears for
several seconds afterward as if
I had awakened from falling,
and like this poem, it was all
so unexpected.

Daphne Redoubled

The men call it irony,
the laurels they give
for winning. I call it
stunning, the withdrawal
of thoughts, the trapped
skin, the boughs and production
of life’s primordial formulations
as reward, when there have always
been thorns and anemic reeds
that are rendered onto emperors
teal and ridiculed. If a bush is still
enough, for long enough; if it does
not burn, a cob web is in the offing.
Hush, hush, sweet dust and ethereal
record, made from what we don’t
know: switch grass in the air and
crab apple stems, in the vaulted
spaces, corners and high ceilings.
Once my mother found the cob webs
in my apartment, she became so frustrated.
She was too fragile then to climb onto a chair
and too short with a broom to reach them.

Copyright © 2014 Jane Rosenberg LaForge

Jane Rosenberg LaForgeJane Rosenberg LaForge lives in New York with her husband and daughter. She is the author of the full-length poetry collection, With Apologies to Mick Jagger, Other Gods, and All Women (The Aldrich Press 2012); and the experimental memoir, An Unsuitable Princess: A True Fantasy/A Fantastical Memoir from Jaded Ibis Press. More information is available at

The Tower Journal
Spring/Summer 2014