Sometimes, as I lay in my room at night,
starlight dancing like shattered glass
across the floor,
I pretended I was one with the shadows.
I would close my eyes,
cocooning myself in nothingness
and disappear from this sphere of inwards-facing eyes
in the centres of which I hung, suspended.
Sometimes it felt as though that suspension
was a silken spider’s thread
so I could sway, caught like a fly
in the equilibrium between hatred and love.
These thoughts flickered through my head
as I watched them now:
newly-weds—lives so bright,
so happy and simple,
while all along I hovered in their
magnificent shadows like a scarecrow on a stick—
wooden, stiff, presented to them
as they wished to see me.
Their eyes meet like sand greeting the wind—
invisible velocity sustaining them
in an equipoise of their own perfection.
And I, with a tainted heart,
stand back and watch them share love
I will never feel,
hatred crawling on my skin like
so many spiders.
“Like so many shadows” by Molly Crighton (Year 10 Columba College).