Here we stand, you and I,
aching souls sentenced to life
within frail cages of tissue and bone
behind walls that first were fences—
boundary-markers over which to meet—
but now serve only to imprison our selves.
And within, we are lonely.
Here we stand, cage to cage,
and very ordinary-looking cages, too,
but for the windows through which pass
the elements—light and air and sound—
in endless but tentative stream
of shadows, breaths and fading echoes
bespeaking something more within.
But without, we are unheard.
Here we stand, two apart
longing to reach out across this space
littered with remnants of much unsaid, unknown:
emotion, experience, expectation;
but unable, it seems, to open doors
that, hardly aware, we locked so long ago—
locks that now are stiff, and we are stuck
within these familiar cages,
waiting out our life sentence, self-imposed.
“Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in . . .” (Revelation 3:20 KJV)