I dreamt of white shoes and staircases

This image or media file contains material based on a work of a National Park Service employee, created during the course of the person's official duties. As a work of the U.S. federal government, such work is in the public domain.

I climb a spiral staircase in the dark
thick black air surrounds me
I step cautiously
not sure where the staircase leads
I look ahead to see
what lies beyond the next curve
I see light shining from above
exhausted and out of breath
I emerge at the top
and there you are
leaning against the rail
dressed in polo shirt and jeans
your shoes are so white
you always liked them that way
I shade my eyes
I say
“What are you doing here”
“Waiting for what”
you smile at me
“For you”
I smile back and look down
I cannot see where the stairs began
“Am I going with you” I ask
“Then what are you waiting for”
“For you to be okay with me going”
I hold my breath and close my eyes
“Where are you going”
“Someplace where my shoes don’t get dirty”
“Your shoes are so white” I say
I open my eyes
half awake
somewhere between here and there
all that remains is a whisper
“I always liked them that way”

This poem was written in memory of our son Tyler Grant Utley following a dream in which I was given the opportunity to say goodbye. Thank you for visiting me in my dreams Tyler. I love you. Always have. Always will. With all my love, Mom


About Susan Warren Utley

Susan Warren Utley is a wife and mother living and writing in the shadows of the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. Her stories are inspired by the unexpected twists and turns of real life and by her muse, a feisty Jack Russell Terrier who occasionally answers to the name of Lucy. View all posts by Susan Warren Utley

4 responses to “I dreamt of white shoes and staircases

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