If I have a belief it’s in the darkness.
I feel safe in that pitiless vacuum.
I cannot see any thing, and the nothing that is cannot see me;
At least that’s the lie I tell myself.
Who knows what the other knows?
We talk and talk and talk…
But do we ever really hear the silence in one another?
And when we come together what then?
Aren’t we something else then, a part of that secret world,
A world only we share but no one else can know?
(Do we even know its secrets?) There’s always this opacity there
Just where you and I make contact. What is that?
Have we ever truly touched each other (not
flesh on flesh, the sensual tracings in the dark,
but that vital center where the flames reside?),
Or is it impossible to caress the darkness between us?

©2021 S.C. Hickman

2 thoughts on “Darkness

  1. An ode to opacity delivered with lucid transparency — nicely done, S.C.

    Last night in my dream you were living just down the hall from me. I borrowed your coffee maker but it didn’t work properly, or at least I couldn’t get it to work — tepid water that wouldn’t drip through into the cup. I’d left a couple of my books lying around and realized with some apprehension that you’d seen them: a Nietzsche, a Sartre. You were chatting with a pal — evidently your dream self is an excellent basketball player, a power forward type.

    My walk this morning took me behind the dialysis center. There on the edge of the parking lot lay a sheet of paper. It had clearly been run over a number of times before wafting its way out of the road, sodden with dew and spattered yellow with pine pollen. On it were printed stanzas 9-11 of a poem, the words transliterated in the English alphabet but clearly not English — south Asian by the look of it. I held in memory the first four words on the page: “Jaya jaya hey japya.” Googling this four-letter string when I got home I found that it’s part of the “Mahishasura Mardini Stotram,” a Sanscrit ode to a Hindu mountain goddess. I did my best to translate the four words at the top of the page: “Victory and victory is sung to you.”

    Inasmuch as you are manifesting your poet-self these days, and since you appeared in my dream, and knowing that you live in the mountains, I figure the message is meant for you. I have now fulfilled my responsibility as the designated messenger.

    Liked by 2 people

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