Last night I had a dream about you. In the dream you appeared in a room. There was a party or a small gathering and you were there. I was surprised –I had organized the party and knew the people who were expected to arrive. You looked well and faintly European. I said it had been many years and you said yes. You led me to another room and showed me something– a piece of glass or maybe it was a crystal with angles inside of it. I told you I had started and ended many lives. I felt I had to report back but then felt like it was all an excuse. You kept holding the glass like it was a part of your arm or hand, like the glass was an extension or gesture you wanted me to understand. Inside the glass were mathematical decisions and pathways, all cut to a kind of crystallized map. You said this was everything and by everything you meant something I would understand. It is up to you you said what want to do with this glass.

A place my blood knew

On the train one night a song comes on Spotify, and within seconds I am crying because it sounds like the Balkans, like a dusty street in summer, like three generations of women barefoot in the yard halving peaches at the stone sink.

It wasn’t even a Bulgarian song, just a rhythm that sounded like a place my blood knew.

-Adriana Cloud, from “We Who Leave”