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  • By Rowland Hughes

Candle Night

Featured in New Lyre Winter 2023

Dangerous to touch, yet tempting me to step into a world of memories. And in a darkened room, when my eyes accustom to its halo of light, It takes me places I know,

and places I don’t. The spinning wheel of my imagination gives me a landscape of imagined trees, a mystery of roses and the shadows of a vulnerable child. Though there is more than one child, as there is more than one childhood.

Age has given me a choice to push aside the dark interiors of my mind. There are moments trapped in the flame that exist to taunt me, black horizons painted on a nursery wall.

Yes, the candlelight has its own soul, not related to mine. And there are no destinations left in its flame, only a confusion of light and dark. But roses still grow secretly below the trees, buried underground, in a place only I can see.

Rowland Hughes is a Welsh writer and poet. He was born, and lived until his late teens, in the Rhondda Valley, from where he still draws most of his inspiration. He worked as a Master Decorator and studied trades in the construction industry. He later became a Local Authority Assistant Surveyor. Due to ill health, he retired in 1997. In 1998, he joined a Cardiff University Creative Writing Group. He loves to observe people, places and nature, writing in bustling cafés and the confines of his writing shed.

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