The Road to Sleep

by Stephen Paden

the road is winding to its end
the air is colder
my footsteps lighter

the wooden skeletons a constant reminder
though they die for a short time
they are reborn again

the pale, gray sky hangs over me
and the white landscape blinds me
if I stare too long

great arms protect me now
hanging above me
against the diminished sky

frozen fingers
reaching for the hidden sun like claws from the earth
grasping for hope

quiet sleep
I too am tired; tired of a dreamless sleep
a burden we share

leaves will soon return
but I will join them now in their anticipation
and dream their dreams

in Spring
their sun-baked fingers will reach violently towards the sky
a new beginning

but now as my breath leaves me,
now we’ll share this bed
of frozen earth

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