The Lady of Shallott
Winter days are dim here.
When my alarm sounds
in the morning, I flail in disbelief--
it must have been set
for half-past three-- some
ungodly hour, so dark--
and when I finally
sit up, the Lady of Shalott is looking
at me, a half-finished Waterhouse print,
bought as a student in Wales.
Her face accuses, rolled balls
of blurry yarn unwinding
from her hands.
The loom's frozen in shock, a
hazy Camelot gleams in the dark scene
through the window--
that damned, tempting window!
I want to collapse
back onto the pillow, into the plumy
dreams I just left, pull the blankets
over my head and hide
from the morning, as if from a monster
and I were five.
I can feel the Lady's gaze
burning at me.
"Do you see what happens?"
she asks, her face the only thing
in focus, finished.
What happens when we avoid
our work-- distraction, distruction.
Her sky dark, the lights of the castle
are glimmering, or maybe a set of
"Was it worth it, though? Would
you do it again?" I say, drawn
to the blurry suggestion of Camelot.
"Yes, I would," she says.