night light

I raise my head, lift my chin to a new dawn.

The room is dark, the clock says it’s hours before daylight. 

I turn my back on it, shut my eyes, try to find my place in my sleep again.  

It’s not happening.  I can’t go back. 

So I open my eyes.

The fog over my body lifts one inch at a time until I bring the picture into focus.  Train my eyes on a new object.   Follow it back and forth, spellbound.

Falling in love, I want to bring it closer.

Hold it and press it to my lips.  Taste it. 

And then.

Like a baby — completely unaware of the connection between a new movement in her world and herself — lo and behold —

I’ve got my own toes in my mouth.

The other that captivated me from a distance is myself. 

The parts of myself that were gloved with vanity, heeled with pride, and caked with pretense are being laid bare, revealing fingers and toes and features that are lovable —

simply because they are —


Author: Julie Ann Stevens

My art flows from the patterns & paths of my lived experience which ⏤ like yours ⏤ are at once deeply personal and entirely universal.

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