Thank the Norsemen for their crashing longships landing on the western sands of Europe in 843.
Their raid led them to a place of worship where prayer and saints repeated themselves in the
window of the church
Jesus a mother and child a cross
in amber in sapphire.
The Vikings named it vindauga.
Vindr meaning “wind.”
Auga meaning “eye.”
And perhaps they would have chosen a different name if the images did not obscure the
invitation from the white man inside, holding faith in his hands because words have power.
Centuries passed when the artist understood vindauga to mean that the eyes are the window to
Inside the coffee shop, the artist sits at a table alongside the window. “I need inspiration.”
Smudges map the entire glass, held together by a metal picture frame. The windows ledge, a
single plank of wood, holds the artist’s supplies: a pen, a notepad, and
for colored girls who have considered suicide/when the rainbow is enuf.
When my grandfather died, I wrote him a letter. I sat at the desk behind the only window in my
bedroom, with a second-story view of pansies and bloodroot because there’s beauty in words.
Because words have power. The Bible tells me
ask, and it shall be given.
When I was younger, my parents would convince me to sit on the front porch and watch the
storm with them. The slits of the plastic chair pinched my bare thighs as I stood when a crack of
lightning told me to go back inside. In the living room, behind the glass and the panes, the
wonders of nature performed for me. In her selfish way, she shook trees, buildings, and allowed
her light to strike and enter the family room once every few minutes.
It was Édouard Bénédictus in 1909 who dropped and shattered a jar of oil in his bedroom. After
finishing the painting, he created safety glass, that when struck, simply bulges and bends.
During family trips, I’d glare forward, from the backseat and through the windshield. Even on a
sunny day, I’d keep watch for threatening clouds or
“Oh, that’s real nice.” Everyone laughed.
those who look through windows grow dim (Ecclesiastes 12:3)
It wasn’t until after the funeral that I realized the Lord was right.
The Ancient Romans built their windows by flattening glass jars into small, thick sheets which
now hang inside of my apartment, like paintings. I watch them as vehicles pass below on the
slick pavement. Car horns. Any horn. Instruments trying to get in tune, C or C#. The voice of the
crosswalk tells me
Go. Go. Go. Walk. Go. Go.