There’s a place outside my universe
just across the street
viewed from my living room window
one elevator and a three minute walk away.
Purgatorial stop for innocent souls
once scourged by searing flames
they claw, stretch, adapt to live
ignore death’s too soon call.
Red yellow flames once licked their skin
lit pain in fissures blackened deep
now loved ones stand and pray
plead for angels’ breath to soothe.
Their passage, mythological in scope
an underworld of white-masked faces
wrap and unwrap shrouds of gauze
each treatment claims a toll.
I sit and stare from comfortable skin
commuter rail late, supper cold
he-said-she-said politics at work.
Tears erupt as eyes seek light.
Suddenly see through the panes
eyes pop open, slapped to senses
you have life, move on and live
as they struggle up from hell.
This poem resulted from a prompt in my poetry class, to write about something you see all the time, IE perhaps look out your window, or note what you see on your daily walk to work, something in your house….look more carefully at something you see every day. Photo is actual view from our window — motivation for the poem.