In the nursing home hallway

she sits, eyes shut too tight

to really be asleep;

tall with a slim grace

almost gone.


There is so much astir around her,

and she doesn't decrease it any,

even as she sits soundless,

those sleepless eyes

shut so tight.


What nightmare lives

in that tornado alley mind

that could scare her so

and keep her awake,

shut her apart

from me?


Even if I asked, she couldn't tell.


So the world moves and passes.

Aides speak to her,

but she won't answer back,

just nonsense whispers

as her lips go slack.


And when she finally does open those eyes they shine.

They shine like a sky cold enough

to form frost, vast enough

to lose a man, turbulent enough

to scare away any nightmare.


© Michael Griffith, United States



Michael Griffith began writing poetry to help his mind and spirit heal as his body recovered from a life-changing injury. Recent work appears online and in print in such outlets as The Blue Nib, Nostalgia Digest, The Wild Word and Poetry24. He resides near Princeton, NJ.