‘And What Now of Dreaming?’
A Poem by Deborah Landau

From Her Collection Soft Targets

April 26, 2019  By Deborah Landau

And what now of dreaming?
We’ve failed the planet has published our failures.

Our crimes are perpetual methane
and sweltering, arrogant and endless—

poor fucks we are, breathing mindlessly
as the marsh grass floods,

and here comes the supermoon again,
like it’s so special.

Weak and disordered become the governments,
disquiet rules us now.

Onward, I thought,
and so we were obscured.

The snow goes to the gallows
of a warm grass and what survives?

Seasons grow immodest,
the bullet sun does parch

and drive us migratory
in search of new and fertile fields.

The long drought makes blaze the plankton
makes smoke the oceans

and insincere the governments—
a demise indelicate.

We’re in a deep jelly now
no cause for applause

but try a little clemency
my body is warm today, and yours,

we have this small span of time
and in this way we’re millionaires.

Bright colors we make when pressed, see?
Basta! dawdling on the edge again that’s me.


From Soft TargetsUsed with permission of Copper Canyon Press. Copyright © 2019 by Deborah Landau.

Deborah Landau
Deborah Landau
Deborah Landau is the author of three collections of poetry: The Uses of the Body and The Last Usable Hour, both Lannan Literary Selections from Copper Canyon Press, and Orchidelirium, selected by Naomi Shihab Nye for the Robert Dana Anhinga Prize for Poetry. In 2016 she was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship. "And What Now of Dreaming?" and “When it Comes to This Fleshed Neck” are from Soft Targets, her fourth collection, coming in April from Copper Canyon Press

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