Back Drop

From the collection published in 2015, Autumn Opens a Door.

Back Drop

The fluorescent light
in the office is
diffused almost not at all
by the window shade. I can see
the hard merciless shape and glow of it
the callous even illumination it casts
here from the street
enough to know that
there is no hiding from that light
in that room.
If only
someone had thought to add
a table lamp with a warm-colored shade
to the office
it might be all right
but the fact remains:
that room
is one in which
people are given bad news
all day long.

"House at Night with Lights" - photograph, @ 2006.

“House at Night with Lights” – photograph, @ 2006.


4 thoughts on “Back Drop

  1. Thank you. I am very sensitive to lighting, I think because I don’t see well, and so I really need it and notice it, and fluorescent lights rarely are friendly lights, I think. And that is what started me thinking …to get to this poem.

  2. I once spent a winter teaching in an interior classroom and not seeing daylight Monday to Friday (literally because of Scotland’s lack of Winter light) and so all the light I had was from a nasty fluorescent light in my windowless classroom. I suffered frequent headaches because of it.

  3. Yes. My corresponding experience was working one level below ground for two years. It was one nutty department and I can remember looking out over the floor at all the washed out faces under those lights.

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