Tanka Sequence: Light in the Shadows

white crocus buds and leaves appearing through snow

grey walls
a grey polished floor
our movements
the jangling keys

opened and locked
by strangers
behind us a free world
turns grey and disappears

female prisoners
scan my face, my eyes
while being open
it is hard not to look
at what I can see

how blue
the light around the mother
who hurt
her child’s abuser
tears running down her cheeks

we talk and listen
to each prisoner’s song
first in rows
then in a circle
a pink light glows

© Xenia Tran

Ribbons, Winter 2023: Volume 19, Number 1

lilac white crocus buds appearing through snow
flowering currant lit up by the afternoon soon

More than twenty years ago, I ran a series of workshops in a women’s prison that linked the chakra system and its colours to meditation practice. The first session in this series inspired the above sequence.

Wishing you all a wonderful Wednesday and a peaceful rest of the week,

with love from Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

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