• Vol. 05
  • Chapter 06

Fall Someday

My grandfather barely left the ground.
He stumbled his whole life, dragging
knuckles, head bowed, his body
a question mark, always asking,
is this safe, is this prudent?
Scrounging for the left-behinds,
he worked the streets and fields
of his hometown, a metal
detector, ear to the ground, hoping
for some indication that treasure
lay under his feet if only he never
looked up. He shuffled his shoes,
scuffing the dirt, and before
he knew it, his spine shrunk,
each disc dissolving, floors flattened
by earthquake. One year he stood tall,
the next, a pile of rubble, though
in all honesty, it was such gradual
demolition, we hardly noticed the dust.

I fight the gravity of any situation.
There's nothing beneath me worth
more than the satisfaction of climbing
to heights that appear to be just
out of reach. I'll defy every harness,
all glue and weight meant to affix
and tamp me down. As long as I fight
the insistent pull, I have sway over
my life. I ascend, climb, refuse to
look down until I reach the top.


Fall Someday

When I do, my body starts to
twist into a Gordian knot. It is here
I feel most love for my grandfather.
I try to stand triumphant but instead
contemplate how to get down. Will
I shimmy and slide, then march to
the next daunting tower? Or will
I find myself thinking, if we all gotta
fall someday, why make it soft?