You strike a match, light your lantern,
flood the night with signs of life.
But not all souls shine this evening.
A woman lies cold on the riverbank.
You move slightly closer to see
if her chest begins to rise and fall,
if her eyes move or fingers stir
or if there’s any spark at all.
You think she looks so pretty,
cheeks catching the moon’s shimmer,
red hair glistening with water,
like an actress or a singer.
But you know that she’s not sleeping.
She’ll never wake and smile.
So you sigh and trudge through starlight
towards town, which takes a while.
You tell the first person you find
about the lost soul you saw.
Another woman, lying lifeless.
Another problem for the law.
Deborah Rose Green is Contributing Editor for Hey Young Writer! She is also the author of Dragon Pearls (2019) and Crown My Heart (2020). You can follow her on Instagram at @authordeborahrose or visit her website, deborahrosegreen.co.uk!