Sad Lady with the Apple

You look so sad
standing there holding
that apple, folding
your hands patiently,
waiting for someone to share
your malady—
not because you wish them ill,
but for the company.

Once upon a time,
before all the trouble,
it was just a tree.
You were just you,
I was just me.
But now we’ve fallen
quite precariously
into a darker sea,
where nothing comes
so easily—
even breathing is a task
with no righteous mask.

We are as we are,
naked and empty-handed—
facing the spirits
that have banded
their forces against us:
their duty to remind us
to keep one eye open,
to never rest easy;
to mourn what was lost,
to count up the cost
of our squandered humanity.

Claire Juno, © 2012