Torch, poetry written by Nigel de Costa at
Steve Johnson



written by: Nigel de Costa


It’s her torch.
A small, black, metal tube,
with a red, rubber grip.
It fits neatly in my hand,
easy to hold.


In my hurry, I knocked it off the table
and now it won’t come on.

I twist off the bulb holder,
pull out the LED,
a fly’s composite eye,
fifty small beads,
opaline and yellow,
all intact.

I unscrew the handle,
remove the power cell,
rotate the batteries,
line up the lettering,
put everything back,
tighten it up, again.

Click: on, off, on.


I set it down,
stare at it,
if I leave it perhaps,
somehow over time,
it will start to work.

But I know it won’t.

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