Her Shiny Red Shoes

It was cold in Portland

We crossed the street

surrounded by skyscrapers

necks craned upward

our breath fogging

looking back

to the cocktail lounge

we left behind

on the 40th floor

A cop across the street

busts a crack head

hands held tightly

behind his back

Cars weave in and out

jockeying for position

their lights liquid red and green

on the rain slippery streets


They said it might snow

Light flakes are falling

I pull my coat

tighter around my neck

and I feel the closeness

of the other side

like water rushing

in the background

The invisible eternal

that we emerge out of

into the now


Tonight I slip in

and out of it

So close

the invisible

like death

But not dark death

or mean death

but the space that contains

death which is small

when compared with it

It is so close I think…

if I just turned

fast enough

I would see it

The infinite life

on the other side

and I would turn back around

and know that it is at my back

just there

and that all things that I am seeing

in front of me

are luminous

but temporary

Like the young people

in the play we saw

skin radiating

eyes shining

voices clear

and whose energy when combined

on the stage

created the most brilliant scenes

of the brightest being

and the sweet little girl

that sat beside me

who just for this night

wore her shiny red shoes

in honor of Dorothy

in the land of Oz

It brought me to tears

but I welcomed it

This priceless light of the actors

and their grace


I guess I cried because

I remembered

like I was an angel for a moment

how precious is life on earth

and that each of us

are given lives of moving light

whether bright or dim

colored with such an array

of shades and hue

and set in situations

where the light hits us

just so

when all the while

we are so close to the other side

Not dark death

Nor mean death

But the shimmering

and endless life

that contains it