Coexistence by Alice Smith


A long, dark year
filled with distance and disease,
murder and marching,
prejudice and protest.

I toss and turn, but the stars
outside the windowpane
are blind to my disquiet
for they glimmer and gleam
as always. I fall asleep fearing

what tomorrow’s news might bring,
yet the sun rises spreading pastel
promise across the horizon
announcing the splendor of a new day.

I lift eyes to the colorful canvas,
beg to be delivered from discomfort
and distress, and be showered
with everlasting joy, though
this histrionic plea will never be.

I take the Sunday paper into the yard
and watch the leafy shadows mingle
with the headlines, sense the ever-present
coexistence of darkness and light,

of suffering and joy,
          of what has been for ages
                    and what is yet to come.

Alice Smith lives in Chattanooga, Tennessee with her husband Alfred and their dog Leroy. Together they have four children and four grandchildren. Alice has studied dreams for a number of years and has learned much about waking life from the world of dreams. Her work has appeared in literary journals, and she has published six collections of poetry including That Little Girl and Reimagining.

Image credit: Abstract background wallpaper (Pixabay)