I asked my friend Doug Shaw to select a piece of his work for me to write about. Here is my response.
Breaking Out by Janet Webb
Warm, familiar, not loud, not bright,
This comforting place is my delight.
This shell keeps me secure, held and still,
Away from the cliff edge, safe from ill will.
These bars protect me from unknown harm,
Enclosing with nothing to cause alarm.
They stop me from doing what’s foolish, what’s rash,
Protecting me from what’s harsh, what’s brash.
But painfully bound to a familiar game,
Repeating, repeating, repeating the same,
The solid walls smother and stifle the din
And I shrink and contract; my outlook looks in.
So I break from this jail that’s safe but a bore,
Cut the rope that tethers and learn to soar.
Looking over the edge I see a different view
And risking the fall, I learn something new.
I’ll leave the comfort of what I know
And explore what is hidden in order to grow.
To climb like a vine and snatch at the sky.
And if I fall? Well, for a moment I’ll fly.