Imagination baits me –
mother to relentless thoughts,
a fierce dance in my head
to bruise my weary mind

and snake through empty hours.
They move through the night,
trip me up in the darkness
with quiet, persistent words

loud as a headline.
They howl, and silently
bear my heart away,
worry it like a trapped mouse

stretched on the rack
of elusive sleep. Again.
My calm is worn to powder,
my resilience to zero.

This does me no service. At
night’s end and dawn’s threshold,
I study the lie of the land,
the yawn of distance to sanity.

Finding my balance
I take careful aim,
and stretch to jump the chasm
across into the light again.


Christine Rigden