Steffen Horstmann

This darkness the dead wear like shawls in the shadows.
You hear the sound of their footfalls in the shadows. 

Nights you pace the border along some nether world,
Hearing the voice of a ghost that calls from the shadows. 

In your dreams you are always being led
Down an aisle of steep walls in the shadows. 

Sometimes you notice a brief light,
Like a thrown torch that falls in the shadows. 

You watch a hooded angel float through moonlight,
& read the script chiseled onto walls in the shadows: 

You will be ushered through a domain of black fog.
The beating of a mortal heart stalls in the shadows.


STEFFEN HORSTMANN has written more than one hundred ghazals in English. His poems and book reviews have appeared in publications throughout the world, including in Baltimore Review, Common Ground Review, Istanbul Literary Review, The Kashmir Walla, Texas Poetry Journal, and Tiferet. His book of ghazals, Jalsaghar will be published in November by Kariboux Limited.