I don’t care about darkness.
The monsters it houses don’t scare me.
The caverns and hallways I traverse to move about in darkness
mean nothing to me; just another way to get from here to there.
I don’t mind bumps in the night,
screech owls and coyotes and
tree limbs scratching against my windowpane.
I am more afraid of the darkness in my own head, my own soul.
The darkness that makes me doubt,
that brings fear where no fear should be;
that wakes me, clammy hands and panicky breathing, thrashing from side to side
“what? where am I? oh, ok. It’s ok.”
It’s the darkness in my dreams
that I can’t quite shake
even in the bright sunshine of midday
that frightens me,
It’s the lonliness in giving up, giving in, walking away,
denying the obvious truth
that haunts me.
It’s wondering if what they say about me, and what I fear most about myself, is actually true
that puts me off darkness.
No, I don’t mind the ghosties and ghoulies,
I embrace the fireflies and the night jasmine and the
neighbors walking their dog one last time before bed.
I am not afraid of the quiet darkness
where snow falls
where headlights flash and cars speed past
where babies cry and whine
where lovers sleep, tangled in sheets and each other,
where shadows look like
deepest fears and darkest secrets.
No, it’s not the dark of day that scares me, I tell myself.