t(w)o valentines

by Barbara L.B. Storey


(Originally published in Tunnels Vol. 1 – 1988)



{These poems are cryptograms - hidden in each poem is the name of the person to whom the poem is addressed. To discover the names, take the first letter of the first line, the second letter of the second line, the third letter of the third line, etc.}




Caught in the shadow regions of two worlds, one life,

Can I deny the cruelty that Fate has spun?

Not born to know a wholeness here or there, I bore

The hell of living, man and beast . . . and neither one.

Forgetting that a heart would fall when mine did soar,

I've burst my soul's restraints . . . with you. Then felt the knife

That's pierced our dream. Now, two – half in, half out the door

We stand. Now, two – apart, minds locked. No grief, yet strife,

To find the cage now holds a pair, which once held one.





Velvet the eyes, the soul that set me free from my

Life's cage – a span so free of care. Of meaning, too.

Can you believe I would not trade such gilt for gold?

You called to waking restless dreams obscured by sleep.

So, when I see our love hemmed in by precious bars,

How can I weep? We find our hearts a perfect match.

And if it is cruel Fate . . . its web will hold us fast.