was the moment behind you,

the one that looked like a pencil mark on a stucco wall,

that sounded like the single peck of a chicken

into the shadow you just left

for you’re always leaving shadows

or dragging them behind you like criminal mishaps

and when you turn around to confront them they mock you.

Shadowland. Shadowplay. Shadow puppets.

“The day was filled with shadows.”

“Who knows? The Shadow knows!” The one moment

was an oar blade descending, a finger snap, an eye blink,

the flick of a light switch, a jaw clench,

one taste bud awakened,

a necklace clasp, a pinprick,

the little cry of “Oh!” that’s never repeated

in quite that way, even when caught on film,

so treasure it, say collectors,

put it into a locket and wear it everywhere.

Become a collector. Take out your scrapbook at night.

The world is gray. Quiet might not be its name.

-Dick Allen, Freshwater

Categories: Poems & PhotosTags:

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