Homage, Tom Mix, "Cupid in the Cow Camp," 1913 by David Lee Guss
Were children called "bright" when he was a boy
or when she was a girl? Was this child bright,
or dull as those eyes staring out from the
shadows of Time? What brightened the child's
days — a trip to the dark hardware store
where hard candies were a prize for being
still over by the stove as the adults spoke?
What lurked in the shadows behind
the folds of that developing brain? Sinister
plans or nonsense nuances? Does it even matter
now? Who loved the child enough to keep the
portrait, to stand it against the dusty, cold
stove? Someone who recognized that art thrives
in bright shadows.
Written for Poetics — The Poetics of Groundhog Day — Bright Shadow at dVerse Poets, hosted this week by Karin Gustafson, whose prompt post gave samples of wonderful shadow poems, and asked that we consider "jumping off (or into) bright shadows" in our own poems this week.