Scuffed but Shining
by A.S. Coomer

     The front door’s red with an old-fashioned twist doorbell that chimes like a music box. Twist it and watch every head inside turn towards the sound. It’s the first thing people visiting comment on when they arrive.
     We’ve talked about painting it, red’s never been one of our favorite colors, but haven’t found the time or the right replacement color. Plus, the red matches the brick and the rocks in the flowerbed. Red can mean any number of things: love, anger, jealousy, lust. This coat, fading and getting fainter, a pale puckered cherry sitting in the sopping remains of a sundae, is easy on the eyes and has come to stand for something akin to relief. Seeing the door, weary from the world outside, brings a comfort. It’s means the end of a journey, or the beginning of another.
     It’s a barrier, sure, but it also calls to be used.
     “Come in,” it says in its silent way.
     Or, “Go on out.”
     The golden doorknob glints in the spring sunshine, worn with use, scuffed but shining. The stained glass, which takes up the top-half of the door, tints the light passing through into blue and green and more red, casting the colors down onto the white tiled floor. I let my bare feet pass through the refracted light and strain to feel the difference in shade. Sometimes, I believe I can.

Coomer copy

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: A.S. Coomer is a writer and musician. Books include Memorabilia, The Fetishists, Shining the Light, The Devil’s Gospel, The Flock Unseen, and others. Find him at and @ascoomer

(Author portrait by Adrian Lime.)