I can’t write about the darkness that my light cannot see
I can’t write all of the possibilities that don’t exist for me
I’ll write what little truth I’ve gathered on this walk
but I can’t write about the key as I stare into the lock.
I can’t write about the shadows that dance just out of reach
I can’t write of all the mysteries that others stand and preach
I’ll write about a fact if I can just nail it down
but I can’t write about a smile as I sit here with a frown.
I can’t write about the sea as I stand on firm dry ground
I can’t write of all the colors while listening for sound
I’ll write about a moment once my measurement is done
but I can’t write about the moon while I’m blinded by the sun.
I can’t write about the end while I get lost along the way
I can’t write of all the work when I’m engaged in play
I’ll write the words I’m given if my hand will just behave
but I can’t write about my freedom while I’m stuck here as a slave.
—from Rattle #77, Fall 2022
e.c. crossman: “I live in this world. I experience it. Then I try to make sense of it. Finally, I give it my best to communicate what I’ve found to another. Poetry is the struggle to fully connect with someone else; for me that’s mostly been with myself, as I discover the breadth and depth of a life with PTSD.” (web)