50. Things I Can Flip: The Switch

Shannon E. Williams

light switch

He says, me too.
When it’s bad, I think
if I could see the switch
that ends
everything
I’d be tempted
except it is too far
to reach,
even just there
across the room.

Thank god volition
is a casualty
of depression.

I say
When it’s bad, I think
if I could see the switch
that lifts me
up,
I’d ignore it.

In fact, I do.
Every day.
Every time.

Right now.

And suddenly I know it
the way a lost song
pours across the tongue,
this wave a fluorescence entirely
untwinned from the flickering bulbs
that share its name:
Light. It urges
shadow from corner
and washes it into a chiaroscuro
of truss and beam
which takes the weight
I carry. A simple trade:
one stone
for each step.

The switch is an utter failure
at playing hide-and-seek.
I close my eyes and count
to 20 and it says

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