Friday, April 14, 2023

Lantern In a Cave

I sometimes attend an online writing session, The Narrative Method. I enjoy the photo and question prompts, as well as reading in small groups.

Theme: Lantern in the cave. Figuring something out. 

Photo: a shadow of a person wearing a cape with a bird on a branch to the right of the shadow.

3 Prompts. I didn't follow prompt one very closely, just went with where the photo took me.

1. What about the shadow side inspired this person to fly?

Figure it out, he said.

It feels like you're gone

Like you're trying to get away.

Like you don't want to be here.

That you don't want to be with


I don't need to figure anything out, I replied

I know what I have

I know what I want

I know I can do more, be more.

It's not that I don't want to be there with you

It's more like I want to be able

To reach higher,

To soar

Without strings limiting how far I can go,

Without the weight of guilt or anyone holding me down

If you want that to mean that's without you,

Then that is your choice.

You could put on a cape too

if you wanted to

if you dared to.

Figure it out,

Cape or no cape,

Flap your wings or ignore them,

Soar or stay rooted.

I know what I choose.

I have my cape

I have my wings

I have my will

I am off

Whether you choose to come along or not.

2: What do they always know that no insult can touch.

With the sun behind me

I can see wings and a cape

in my shadow

I can feel the strength of my wings

The lightness of my cape

And I anticipate the freedom they will help me


Condescending words,

Mocking questions,

Canned insults,

No longer sting.

I wrap my cape around me

And the words bounce off. 

The gestures and narrowed eyes

Disappear in dust at the flutter of my wings

My cape spreads out behind me

As I soar

Higher and higher

Wherever I want to go.

I am invincible.

I am comfortable.

I am free.

I am me.

3. Bring it all together

"Pull yourself together," he said

"I am together," I replied.

"Is this what you really want?

"To leave, to give up?" he asked.

"I'm not giving up,

"I'm just starting." I replied.

"I'm not leaving, 

I'm going where I need to be."