Standing Still in the Gathering Gloom

I’m standing still in the gathering gloom

There’s a tunnel ahead and there’s not much room

For manoeuvre between its narrow walls

But standing here still I imagine much worse

Now creeping forward, and I can see

The dim light of the tired old sun on a tree

And those dark cold shapes that by day were clouds

Foreboding like the tunnel

Suffocating as a shroud.

Under the first bridge and I’m nearly there

So I slow my pace as the entrance draws near

Crawling along ear to the ground

Separate safe, from threatening, sounds

Now leaving the dusk we’ve entered pure black

Scraping along, drips fall on my back

Soaking in to chill through my skin

As we move slowly forward, climb further in

I stop now, and listen, alone

Straining my eyes but the light has all gone

Creeping again under the weight

Of expectation, hope and fate

I don’t know for what I look

As I trudge, hesitating, on

I long for a signal, long to hear the siren

With its comforts and its everlasting hold

Away from this darkness, away from the cold

But I do not know where this tunnel ends

I no longer know where it once began

And as the sights and noise and dark rattles on

We may never find it, may never know


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