He says no to déjà vu but I’ve heard it all before – a poem by Kate Garrett

He says no to déjà vu but I’ve heard it all before

Sometimes even when I’ve slept for hours, grey gathers
at the corners of my eyes, a dawn vignette, and you are speaking

everything you say is something I can predict
because I know we talked about this months ago

you tell me again how you don’t believe in déjà vu
because you’ve never felt the fog of it
just like the last time, when you laid out your reality
in these words, in this room

the light played on your cheekbone and chin
as it does today but it was summer then–

now it’s winter, and I know real life is no better than a lucid
dream: I must reach out and make one thing different

I must bend your tongue away from this conversation
to a point when the next step is the first new moment
of the morning

it will taste of breaking free / it will taste like a glitch

freedom is a glitch in a snowstorm, walking a circular
track looping back to find a fork in the heat-smudged road

until it is February again, when the sun has gone cold
but is trying its best to warm us.


Kate Garrett writes and edits. She is the author of six pamphlets, and her first full-length collection, The saint of milk and flames, is forthcoming in April 2019 from Rhythm & Bones Press. Kate lives in Sheffield, UK with her husband, five children, and a sleepy cat. www.kategarrettwrites.co.uk / twitter @mskateybelle

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