Wall Lights

I promise not to bring up religion, but the night is made orange by the light in the parking lot, and the shadows move fast. Promises, like photos at dark, must be made in stillness. We are on our backs, talking to the air above our faces. We each wonder how the other can be so ethical and yet so wrong. Do you know that when you’re explaining something, you tap on my back? It distracts me and makes me more wrong. I touch your beard, the hairs aflame, all errant genetics. You’ve inherited knowing what you want, and I’ve inherited the wind, or something even lighter, that has picked me up and flown me into your heavy arms. I could never be content among the gods. We wrestle in that cold room, fools in a foolish debate, each holding onto something a little left of left, a little right of right of where we are. And yet we move naught, our breath like ink stretching as we age. Thirsty, I go to the bathroom for water. My sweat beads into the sink, each glob a confused universe enmirrored. I hear you stir, your blankets a zephyr, and the droplets tremble. I turn off the lights and twist back under our pillow of air. But you have seen me, and I have seen you, and we know we are alike in our restiveness. I promise not to bring up religion, but our virtues dance up a thin line to the windowsill. They look into the bright blacktop beyond and lose themselves watching. Promises, like photos at dark, must be made in stillness.


Emma Ignaszewski author photoEmma Ignaszewski lives and works in Princeton, New Jersey. She received her B.A. in English with a Concentration in Creative Writing from Cornell University, and her work has been published in Washington Square Review, Driftwood Press, Burrow Press Review, and the Cortland Standard. “Myths” is an adaptation of a wintry reflective night in upstate New York that reunited the author with her childhood fascination with the Greek tale of Eros and Psyche.