Jennifer Patino

Jamie Lee Curtis

I had that dream with Jamie
Lee Curtis in it again last night

Not the one where she dressed up
and danced all sexily for
Arnold Schwarzenegger and
I yelled at her to stop because
she was embarrassing my
Not that one

(He wouldn’t let me
watch True Lies because
of that scene so I don’t
know if you caught the
bad guys or not yet and
it’s been years…over a
decade, Jamie)

It wasn’t
a scream queen dream either
Her brother in the creepy
mask didn’t show up
It was the wrong time of year

This is the
dream where Jamie Lee Curtis
is my mom and it’s
the zombie apocalypse and
she is my only hope

I know she’s my mom in the dream
because she doesn’t seem to
care for my dream boyfriend
She keeps scowling at him
She scowls when
she loads her shotgun
When she cleans it, too
She scowls at the woman
who lets us seek refuge
at her farmhouse
because she smiles too much
and treats my dream boyfriend
like he is one of her own children

Jamie keeps watch
every night because Jamie
doesn’t sleep
Not in this dream
Not ever
Mothers lose so much sleep
I hate that it’s always because
of my existence

The dream ends when
Jamie can’t save everyone
no matter how hard she fights
Except for me
We escape by swimming
through a pool of ridiculous
oversized inflatable dream obstacles

I can’t swim in real life, but I
hang on to Jamie Lee Curtis’s
waist and we make it
She tells me we will
and I believe her


Born and raised in Detroit, Michigan, Ojibwe poet Jennifer Patino has been writing poems and short stories since she was six years old. Her work has been featured in Enfuse Magazine, Garden Gnome Publications, FONT Magazine, and Echoic Magazine. Her poem “Bio-Me” is noted as a Poem of Merit for the 2017 Helen Stewart Poetry Award. She now lives in Las Vegas with her artist husband. You can check out her blog at or Follow her on Twitter @jenniferapatino