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Into the Cool Shadows

by Christine Waldman

Dampened and muted

Beige in hue

How else can I

Traverse the sharp places

And dark hollows

Black and white image of hands reaching out  toward a bright light above them.
Image credit: Nahid Hatami (i.am_nah) on Unsplash

When my colors are florescent,

The sharper the sting

So I peek out a moment

And only feel a glancing blow

Long enough to know

I long for vibrant shades

But usually can only endure


But lately, I find that I can stare


And that I'm brave enough

To endure a full-on rainbow

And still be left standing

Those colors now are seared

Into my brain and wrap around

My spine

I will sometimes duck back down

Into the cool shadows

To check my limbs

And see if I am still


And maybe next time

I won't stay down there

So long