Shadowland

Today she woke up //

She awoke from a peaceful sleep,

Her soft body draped in her old chair

Where she sat for 100 days

She awoke to feel him dancing;

His large, flat, light-as-a-feather feet,

Knocking, tapping, sliding across the floor of her heart

She misses him

With a fear he could be erased — etch-a-sketch style

Gone //

You can’t stay here,

The wind whispers through the trees

While she holds her breath to feel him dancing

Her feet pressed into the earth

Her back straight in the chair

She inhales and he is

Gone //

Wide eyed, in darkness she looks around

She sits in Shadowland

A giant shadow paints the scene, but there is nothing to cast it

Like as a child, she stopped believing

In the Tooth fairy

The first bubble to explode before her eyes

And then

Santa Claus floated by

Pop

He too was

Gone //

And the Bunny on easter, the Abominable Snowman

Carebears and even Harry Potter

Were all turned…

One by one

Her friends all turned

Unreal

And life remained

She remained in the shadows

Of what “real” once was

In Shadowland

Gone //

Like the magic

In her grandfather’s tricks

Specifically the trick with silver coin he would place upon his elbow

He would make it disappear

And she knew it

Ended up in his hand and

Then in his sleeve

She knew

She knew

And he knew too and

There was nothing to believe

They both smiled

A coy expression to accept

Their longing to stay here together

In Shadowland

In the shadows of belief

And their silent agreement

Signed with the upturn of their lips they

Swore secretly, to never say it aloud

To never say that

there was nothing to believe //

Two decades passed and now again

She knows

She can’t stay here

In the shadows

She understands

Illusion over magic

She fears

That if she agrees again today,

If she agrees with him

To see a new era

To step out of the shadows

and into the sunlight

Then he too will be made unreal

He will be

Gone //

She has no choice though

Like back then

She had no choice but to know

That the coin didn’t disappear

She has no choice now

To know

The truth that he declared long ago

The truth that

there is no magic here

She will feel it

She feels it //

It has hit her now

Straight in the face with its full

Cold force

A padded red glove to the right cheek

On the bone

Not a wink

A rosy embrace

Shattering the face she held

Stone

And starry-eyed

No blinks so as not to miss a thing

And this red glove

Gifts her a warm glow on

The cheek it kisses with truth

Before it says goodbye

And when he said goodbye

And an icy hot

Burn

Remained where the lips of denial

Left their heart shaped slobber

Beneath the bones

Above her inflated lung

On the left most side of her chest

Like a crater

When it blasts the moon

A big one

Inhale //

She sees where she is standing

The black penumbra of illusion casts its impossible shade over her scene

Shadowland

She knows it well

Hello

She shouts into the shadows

To hear his voice

In the echoes of her own call

Hello

Hello

Hello

Nothing //

If she leaves this space

She confesses

The end of an era

She closes

The history book of a golden age past

She opens

To a love dried out

And oh how love left its beautiful stains

In the cracking earth beneath her chair

She sees

She can’t stay here

She must leave to drink elsewhere

For water does not rise from the ground

It falls from the sky

and it never rains in Shadowland

She can’t stay here

Where she has sat

For 100 days in the shadows

Knowing that when she leaves

It is really over

Gone //

She stands

up from her chair

She steps

One foot before the other

The sun greets her dusty forehead

She squints as she looks up into the clouds

Light enters her eyes nearly blinding her

She sees him

He smiles

And she smiles back