Reflecting in the Dark

A Thing for Words

In this darkened room, even beneath the blankets,
you can count off the six steps to the dresser,
then two more left to a mirror that provides a serene touch
yet no reflection, and three more to the door on your right,
where egress may mean escape to the embrace of shadow.
Bursting or crawling through that opening
into a place so confining as the freedom to think,
but not do, envelopes you in a different darkness.

Here, numbing paralysis steeps you in
an urn of urges unmet, moving in thought and deed
yet lying in a well-lit casket of stasis beneath
a blanket of worrisome weeds and dutiful dirt.
That existence lies heavier on the soul
than my nimble confinement in a roomful of gloom,
where this tiny physical world and its dreams
are vast and accessible, and reflection means
more than examining my wrinkles in polished glass.

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