I dreamed
a cavernous theatre
where people bid
on others’ colourless goods.
Neither selling
nor buying,
I gripped a framed photo
of someone else’s child.

Then rang
a dinner bell
or a warning.
We carried our
own chairs
shuffle forming
a crowded single line
near the double handled wooden door.

And someone
from far away,
a voice I thought I knew,
shouted stood unbalanced unsteady
waving two open hands:
“before leaving, each one of you
must take and hold me close—-
I am Old Soft Familiar
your fellow (wo)Man”.

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