Night pressing itself revealingly against the outside of my window
distorting its face grotesquely
looking into this dark room
one office lamp on the desk in the blackness
first screaming, emphasizing dark edges and corners
cloaking the invisible black watcher
always looking over my shoulder
chillingly close now
edging faceless onto the threshold of life
then loudly lamenting how old this imperfect desk is
under unforgiving nauseous white fluorescent light
its long cylinder bulb the sword
of a vengeful archangel, St. Michael
illuminating dust, neglect’s infection
the unappealing chips, cracks of aged things
my sick shaking hands pale green under their x-ray
and the blank page’s empty glow pulsating.
He’s waiting there in the outer darkness.
I’m hiding in the only light, the medical light of painful examination
self diagnosing a case of refugee existence
a hunched over body, a constant headache
I’m trying to write my identity into an immortal form
From the shadows he can reach for me
in the searing white light over my desk
closing his black icy claws around nothing but whispering mist.
Paul Edward Costa has previously published poetry, fiction and non-fiction in MacMedia, The Flying Walrus, Timber Journal, Yesteryear Fiction, Entropy, Thrice Fiction, and Diaspora Dialogues’ webzine Shorthand. He also has work forthcoming in Emerge Literary Journal. His areas of interest are illusion and reality, surrealism, experimental writing and the absurd. At York University Paul earned a Specialized Honors BA in History and a BA in Education. He currently teaches high school just outside of Toronto, Canada, with the Peel District School Board.