Steve Sibra – Lavender – 5

by Steve Sibra

In the listing ship of an old woman’s wheezing,
the cold seashore looms.
Every breath is color and motion —
no time left for her to go unnoticed;
her name is etching itself
into cream colored walls.

She folds the thunder of her thinning gasps —
more like pale whispers now;
she wonders at the new
lavender surf beyond her room.
It rolls slow in the winter window shade;
unfurls its lifeless likeness –

she feels purple shadows across her eyes.
Like deeply bruised skin, chilled and uneasy –
the color of time collapsing;
lungs fill with a flood of sorrow,
the sensation of swimming through chains.

The lavender wave extends
a tentacle – the old woman can see
a thousand stories crawling under
the damp, pale carpet of skin. She smiles,
like a wind chime catching the breath of the beach.

Now is the time. 
She slips free of old bedclothes,
here is the morning:
lilac sigh floats like an eye on the lavender breeze.                                     


Steve Sibra grew up in a small farming town in Eastern Montana. His work has appeared in numerous journals, including Matador Review, Jersey Devil Press, Gravel, and elsewhere. Steve lives in Seattle. He has one of the largest collections of vintage comic books in the Pacific Northwest.