Light in Other Windows

Photo: ChrisGoldNY, Creative Commons, some rights reserved.

While I have sufficient opinions on the management of every aspect of life, I’m afraid I will never get the opportunity to run the world according to my designs because I am always discombobulated by the coming of morning. While I’m still trying to find my glasses and put on my pants, others have already grasped the reins of power.

Light in Other Windows

Sleepless again, I look for light in other
windows. Who shares my waking — 
tapping at a keyboard, reading late
on a lonely bed, or pacing a cold floor?

What might another night hold? Each
inhabits a different village from each
when everyone else is asleep. The grocer
remembers another woman’s scent;

a vet wakes up from heavy shelling;
a pregnant woman rubs her back.
For me, aging, I sleep little and lightly
as if saving up for eternal rest.

We’re a fellowship of sorts — night owls —
but more in the mind than in company.
They sleep best who lack imagination,
rise early, clear-headed, and set to work. 

Night owls waken one eye at a time, stagger
up to brew coffee, then take it back to bed,
browse through news, or read some mystery.
They can be found in PJs long past noon.

It’s un-American, socialist even — no damn
way to run a country. But since when were
night owls ever given run of the damn
country? That’s right, bucko. Never.

Note: unpublished draft

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3 Responses to Light in Other Windows

  1. Mark Holland says:

    We share the common affliction of insomnia. Currently it is 225 a.m. Central and sleep seems a distant goal. I periodically returned to the kitchen sink to fill my water bottle and peerr out over the neighborhood, surprised to see joggers after midnight with their dogs. At least they’re getting a walk.
    And the cold air muffles the sound of the mile away freeway. So the night is silent.
    Sweet dreams Dale. Beautiful poem.

  2. Paul Davison says:

    Again, another beautiful piece. I used to sleep like a baby. But, looking back, I realized that it was because I stayed up until 2:30, 3:00, 3:30, etc.; trying to get my lessons in order for the coming of the Genghis Khan hordes of my High School students. Now that I am retired, I try to align my sleep with my family. And sadly, it often means a lot of “work” trying to get to sleep. I really liked your line, “Aging, I sleep
    little and lightly, as if saving up for eternal rest.” In my opinion, that says it all.

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