Sometimes I dare myself
To stand close to the edge
fear reminds you that you’re alive
The pit of my stomach drops away
like an elevator summoned
to a lower floor
My palms sweat
What if I need to hold onto
what if I decide
To swing one leg over the railing
See how it feels?
Then the other, dangling.
Contemplating the plunge savors of liberation.
My life is not lacking in gravity
It’s rife with the
The uneven distribution of mass
The curvature of spacetime that pulls
Bodies toward each other
Ah Newton, you old virgin, telling me about
“the law of attraction of the bodies of the solar system”
Which everyone already knows deep in their bones.
The bigger the body, the more you are drawn to it
The more you want to allow
Your slippery hands to release–
Your ass to slide from its seat
On the railing
“nor are those bodies always truly at rest
which commonly are taken to be so.”
How did he know how badly I want to jump?)
To allow the body to surrender
to the ineluctable, the inevitable–
For those few moments
Between letting go and coming to a stop
I would feel untethered, a loose particle
A lie, of course–the opposite is
True–nothing would be holding me up
But hurtling downwards is merely my body
Obeying the immutable laws of the universe
The illusion of flying without wings
Is the purest delusion
Fettered as we always are to the heavy.
What is densest
Will always call me back
To slam, full force, into its
Concrete, uncompromising embrace.
Rules are rules.
So I step away from the edge
Take the stairs
the slower descent
is less exciting
I can always
take that leap
when perhaps the embrace
of the larger body
Will welcome me
with more gentleness.