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Some nights the sky
is a solid teal
as if painted on
and the garbled limbs
and barks of trees
against it feel
more real,
like bearers of a consequence
more pressing,
but therein lies
the deception

Some days the clarity
feels deeper than
what it’s supposed to illuminate,
as if ‘speed of light’
implies needing a highway
that goes on and on
for there to not be
some violent collision
resulting in substance and
space in hot pieces,
as if something as complete
as to be able to only
be either present or missing
needs an intermediate material
to probe into
in order to be

Sometimes that hard light,
that depthless dark
merely glaze over
and for a fleeting instant
the excess pounds and fine lines
don’t show, sometimes
the marks of failure and shame
just bounce off the exterior
and I appear as untouched
by the aspect of experience that
scars you for life
and for one illusory moment
I am more beautiful than
I ever give myself credit for

it never lasts,
just a fraction of an angle
within a fluid movement, where
the right shadow finds me
just a sliver of forgiveness
from the searching
scrutiny of age
just a random directionality
of wind on hair, on fabric

but when I do
catch my reflection
bearing that grace
I always wish I could
scrape them off the surface
of the mirror
and bottle them up,
those elusive drops
of my own rarer essence
to save them
until you can see me
to be consumed by you only
and maybe I could trade it for
a bigger likelihood
of your loving me

untitled photo by photographer Giorgio Violino