Wandering narrow, crooked streets,
by Mary Naylor
Past Lavender Place and Forget-me-not Way,
Lead to a shop on Looking Glass Lane.
Inside, an old cleaning woman
Wrings out her cloth, and
With stiff, bent fingers scrubs the shelves
Until they shine. Softly she rests her hand
On an antique lantern, and delves
Into her voluminous pocket for a polishing cloth.
Untiringly, she rubs the glass and brass, and
When she stops, the lantern sparkles and glows.
She takes out the glass chimney and
Polishes it until the glass can hardly be seen when
Inside the lantern. Tired, her head nods in a doze.
She dreams of her memories of the past
Fragile as images of old glass on glass,
Held together by living, aching brass.
She dreams of genuflecting on groaning knee
In a cathedral holding a crystalline mass
For two lovers exchanging vows and rings,
One, now, only an image like the lantern brings.
Darkness puddles and daylight seeps away as rain falls,
Blurring and wetting the window pane,
Of the old shop on Looking Glass Lane.