Free verse is all about exploration.  Through it we explore our world as it is and all those possible worlds that might exist in other realities.  Not all such thought journeys are in sweetness and light, some delve into very dark corners.  The person, subject of the exercise below, inhabits one of those dark corners.  Many families, perhaps your own, has a member who might resemble this person.

She sits alone
On a straight-backed chair
In a darkened room

Occasionally she will glance
Toward the rain-streaked window
At a grey landscape beyond.

Children play, neighbors commune,
On the other side of the glass
Under sunlit skies of blue.

She wears a dark shawl made of memories,
Each selected with great care,
Sewn to the hem by ancient gnarled hands

A box at her feet
Contains her entire life,
A collection of every event.

She takes out a memory.
It brightens…

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