Poem – “At a Loss with Words” – 1/8/2023

A nightlight keeps me aware.
For our words, we have all things to dare
to keep our eyes open, though we have
always hoped that those stories
will keep pausing at desperate pages,
keep us against that next minute
where an ending might take place,
where this book might burn,

as we’d wilt within a hollow vase,
exploring our emptiness, uncovered,
finding our breath being smothered.

Seamless worry. Spineless consent,
another etching upon a blank,
thoughtless area. What can be cruelest,
in these shapeless, flat descriptions?
Written of who we are,
upon surfaces that never lift
towards higher skies.

Something has always surrounded us,
weeping for us in distant corners,
singing on behalf of our silent hearts,

but what keeps us written,
on pages that have consistently
kept us being stung
with relentless imagery?

What force, what motivation
wears us through in poisonous doubt?
If all we have are words,
who are we, what are we
without a hook to keep us wanting?

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