The Door


Distracting rays were shining round my door

And so I stood

And stepped across the landing floor

To see if any light-source could

Be ascertained but, once I was outside,

I checked my stride.


Out there I found a stretching corridor,

So down I walked.

I had not noticed it before.

On every lintel, names were chalked

And soon I stalled at one that was well-known:

It was my own.


The hinges creaked. I cautiously went in,

Enjoying there

A room where sunlight lapped my skin

And central was a swivel chair.

It spun about. I felt a smile extend:

‘Good morning, friend.’


This figure gestured me towards an arch

Marked ‘Happiness’

And I, determined, moved to march

Its way, but paused: ‘I should express

Some thanks—‘my friend, however, waved and said,

‘You go ahead.’


Once I had ventured in I felt betrayed,

As I discerned

A maze of winding walls that made

Me dizzy, sad, until I turned

One corner and (in hope of what?) I saw

Another door.


Eager, I entered, to a gallery

Closely comprised

Of portals, each a vacancy

For liberty. I realised

I’d never loved a room. It is the door

That I adore.

from The Multiverse (Carcanet, 2018), © Andrew Wynn Owen 2018, used by permission of the author.

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