Portrait in Gray

You have old eyes, your past
life framed black and white

packed away on tintypes,
but you’ve since colored yourself,

swung into the lake with full clothes,
seeped in its indigo blue.

You collect trout scales
to adorn your skin with rainbows,

and hide your memories
under the sturgeon’s fin.

Fish gather as many lives as you do
dwelling at the bottom of the lake,

muscular and lean, they churn
futures into the red-brown deep
and you find in the water that time
is never the enemy, it is the quiet

pressure urging you to grow gills
and breathe.


Brittany Mishra helps make airplane engines for a living and writes poetry and fiction as her passion. She’s lived on both coasts of the US, but now she lives in Washington state, near the Puget Sound, with her husband. Brittany’s poetry can be found in Shabda Press’ Nuclear Impact Anthology and the online journals Voice Catcher, Sky Island, and The Write Launch.