The Creation




It was a dream of bodies 

It was a dream of your body 

      unlocking itself from newly risen fields 

It was a dream of you 

      materializing from the brown limbs of your mother 

It was your great head, 

      a white bear turning toward his north palace 

Your head, a computer written before its era, 

      a work of fantastic connections, 

      a science fiction 

You and your head of Easter Island stone 

You and your sphinx head 

      commanding moving sand to protect the dead 

You and your crossword puzzle, 

      your movie house, 

      your weather zones, 

      your electrically printed unrolling graph of notes and  


It was a dream of you and your legs and your bronze feet 

      and the museum reproduction of them in clay, 

      a dream of your feet kicking their way through war rooms, 

      feet of pilgrimage dust, 

      your saints’ parade 

      your dancing bone-stick rhythm 

And a dream of your legs and arms, 

Your legs, roads home 

      to a mansion invaded by strangers, 

      your dueling pistols laid in a crimson velvet case 

      and locked forever in library glass 

And your thighs of buckskin mouthed to soft touch by native 

      woman, of peasant bread warm from the oven, 

      of hangman’s rope 

And your arms, 

      the hair wires plugged into flesh, 

      your arms like parents, 

      your arms, your tightening belt, 

      your ice crusher 

And it was a dream of your eyes,  

      views of the earth from the moon, 

      ovals of Naples, 

      suspicions of kings, 

      your eyes, your centuries of silence 

      your screams under the water, 

      your secret agents 

And your skin of salt sun-evaporated from waves of the Indian 

      Ocean, of unidentified herbs, 

      of 18th century perfume, 

      of gunpowder 

And your chest, your bed of wheat, the horizon of it 

A dream of your fingers 

      and your male finger, 

      your dangling medal, 

      your limp animal, 

      your mathematics of fingers and your phallus, 

      your stage dagger, 

      wishing fountain, 

      jackpot handle, 

      and balls of oranges stolen by gypsies, 

      oasis figs, 

      hanging gardens, 

      and your divining rod finding the hidden spring, 

      your time machine, 

      your lightning and your shattered tree, 

      and your fingers of kidnap candy bars 

It was dreaming of it and how the mouth and tongue, a quick 

      fish, how the words come out in visible letters, 

      and the mouth 

      and the mountain teeth cutting snow, 

      cracking the spines of fallen deer, 

      and the tongue, 

      a stiff leaf stroke, 

      a burrowing question 

A dream of plastic forming huge shapes of you 

      and shrinking them to nothing, a genie, 

      a formation of clouds dissolving, 

      of sections assembled and taken apart 

      and rebuilt, a cartoon magic, a transplant 

A dream of a sacred marble statue 

      to which tears have been offered for generations 

      and tribute 

      and nothing damaged 

A dream of a glass body trembling between liquid and solid 

      and breaking 

It was a dream of you, 

      of your body, 

      of the bodies that are you, born and reborn, 

      and the longing to take you back 

      and give you up to life again




Color photograph of author Dolores Steward Riccio, looking off into the distance

Dolores Stewart Riccio is the author of six Circle mysteries; Spirit, a novel; several cookbooks, including the original Superfoods series; Doors to the Universe, a collection of poems; and co-author of two books about haunted houses. She and her husband, Ottone M. Riccio, author and teacher, live in Duxbury, Massachusetts.

“The Creation” was published in the TLR Issue: Fall 1975, Vol. 19.