The LUGO Press

What do you see? Illustrated by Jacqueline Obert

What do you see?

This piece was written for the Green Office’s Spring Poetry competition, on the theme: Environmental Guilt, which took place between the months of April-May 2022.



What do you see?

Let the cold wind caress you

On this icy winter morning

As the sun is barely up

As there is no one to be seen


And hollow

On the verge of loneliness

But not quite

Rather a comforting solitude at the break of dawn

As you see your breath right in front of you

With every deep sigh you let out

You start looking around


The cat that resides on the sidewalk

Every morning at 7:45


Every afternoon at 15:00


Like its claws sinking into your skin

At any hint or attempt of petting it

We teeny humans like to think

That we have the control

But really

What is ever in our control


The barber shop on the corner

The barber standing in front

Slightly shivering

Sucking the life out of a cigarette

As if it were his last

(which it could be)

- Now, that’s living -

I greet him with a slight nod

As I walk on

And take the turn around the corner

That leads into the park


Tall trees wrapping their branches around me

With a single leaf on one of them

Swaying in the wind

Waiting to be snitched off

And carried away with the breeze

A breeze that chills every bone

In my body

The trees standing proud

But stark naked

They must be freezing

Down to their core

That’s when I see it

As the wind exhales with relief

Sending the leaves on the ground up in a whirlwind

It snatches the last leaf

Still holding onto dear life

That’s when I see it

One single leaf

Falling to the ground

As the wind engages with it

In a one last dance

And I let out a last sigh