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Poem: My Looking Glass

In a crowded room dimmed to block the light from a ceiling

that ironically caused Michelangelo to lose his vision,

She reaches for my hand and squeezes.

“Look up!” She whispered breathlessly, and a tear rolled down her cheek.


It had been her refrain for the past week as we traveled through Italy.

“Look up!” she would say, and I would lift my gaze to see a classical fresco,

An ornate church ceiling, a cloud-laden sky.

I, always the planner, the doer, the woman on some self-imposed mission.

It was her, always her, that would remind me to look up.

To see the journey before arriving at the destination.


This isn’t our first journey together, not in this life or I suspect the ones before.

My Gypsy Travel buddy and I have seen the lights of Vegas together

As many times as we have seen each other through dark days.

We witnessed all the stamps in our passports of life events.

Walked down the gangway of sorrow hand in hand more than a few times.


In my darkest moments, it was she who reminded me to look up,

To see further than my sorrow to the horizon of hope.

She has been my touch tree in the forest of life.

The definition of HOME.

When I would lose my way, she would help me find ME.

A mirror reflecting to me the past so I could see how far I’d traveled. 


There are weeks in which we don’t exchange words,

Discovered we don’t have to.

We have mapped our hearts well enough to know how to find one another.

Without cell towers or email boxes.


Of all the places we have pinned on an atlas,  

my favorite place

is finding my way to her embrace in an airport.

©2024 Jennifer Deshaies

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