"If you've spent long enough in the forest" by Eva Valenti
If you've spent long enough in the forest
it's easy to forget there's anything else.
The light through the cracks in leaves
is not the warm light of the outside world.
If you've spent long enough in the forest,
it's easy to forget there's any such thing
as natural light (Perhaps the light through the cracks of trees
is your vision failing you, spots of emptiness where in reality
there is nothing but trees and the darkness);
and when you start to doubt the light outside,
this is when you begin to doubt your own lucidity.
I can't come with you into the forest
But I can walk along the edge,
catching fleeting glances of an arm or a hand
calling out through the spaces between trees
so that in the absence of light, a voice can guide you.
The forest isn't all that big if you know which direction to walk.
I can't come with you into the forest,
but I'll be waiting on the other side
so when you emerge blinking,
facing the sun for the first time in what must seem like ages,
I can hold a hand, fingers parted, lightly to your eyes
opening them slowly into eight widening windows
and ease you into illumination.