Category Archives: Poems about falling

Breath

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Fright Night.” What’s the thing you’re most scared to do? What would it take to get you to do it?

Breath

Although it feels to me that my main fear is fear of death,
I think what I really fear is the loss of breath.
For when I have night panics that drive me bolt upright,
it isn’t so much fear of darkness brought on by the night,
as it is my fear of something  cutting off my air.
It  is thoughts of smothering that I cannot bear.

The very thing that makes me fight the snorkel mask and rise
above alluring water worlds for a view of skies
(and all the breaths they bring with them–breaths more easily won
when not underwater, but out here in the sun)
is what causes fear of death––that last futile grasp
to hold on to all of life with one final gasp.

Life is so incredible, I don’t want it to end;
for I have no idea at all what’s waiting round the bend.
At times a flash of memory reveals a bygone life
filled with superstition, violence and strife.
If that is what’s in front of me in a new incarnation,
I’d like to miss out on that life and take a small vacation

from all the karma has in store if my next life is worse,
with no time for leisure––no time for blogs or verse––
then oblivion may not be the worst thing that could be.
Perhaps then I could just accept that there will be no me.
Give in to fate and realize I’m just a part of all.
that recycles and recycles–guided by death’s call.

I’ve Come Undone

I’ve Come Undone

If I could undo anything that’s happened in my life,
I would not undo enemies or illnesses or strife.
For all led up to my life now that really isn’t bad.
All given, I am happy, and frequently I’m glad.
My palm trees may need clipping and my dogs may have the mange,
but all in all there’s really only one thing I would change.
I’d undo one tequila or two or three or four.
I think that that is all I drank. I can’t remember more.
And after that, that dance I did as others ringed the floor?
I fear I chose to party when I should have chosen the door!

And that knee I rocked on back and forth, remembering the twist?
I fear I chose to overdo instead of to desist.
My friends did not remove me, but cheered me on instead.
And now I have a throbbing knee and needles in my head.
That knee I’d earlier injured when I fell on cobblestones
had healed, I thought, relieving all that aching in my bones.
But now I’m hobbling back and forth–gimpy once again,
for you gotta pay the piper when you choose a life of sin.
I know my knee will heal and that this agony will end,
but please remind me next time that tequila’s not my friend!!

The Prompt: If you could undo something, what would it be? Discuss why, potential repercussions, or a possible alternative.

Mexico Adventure, No Fatalities

Mexico Night Adventure, No Fatalities

Leaving that swinging small
coffee house art opening of a friend
with the party still roaring
behind me,
I shift to uneven cobblestones
to avoid the nightly
taco stand set up on the sidewalk,
knowing I must be careful,
but pitching forward anyway,
face-down in the dark street.

Seconds later,
still in thrall to the fall,
thwacked shoulder,
scraped palms.
As I lie in the street,
a crowd gathers
like otters to survey
this new intruder to their world.
I can’t stand up.
Lie groaning in the dark.

They offer twenty hands to help me up,
but I need to lie a spectacle  in the street.
Should they call an ambulance?
Can I not rise?
They ward off cars, enfolding me
in their curious and protective circle.
No way with any amount of help
can I push myself up from the street
on this pounding knee.
I become their Saturday night
entertainment.

At last, unable to bear the shock
of pressure on any part of either leg,
I scoot myself over on my bottom to the curb,
hoist myself up to sit on it,
and from there
my right leg can get contact with the street to push.
Two hands help me up and go around me
as I hobble the half block to my car.
Yes, I can drive.
But everything hurts.
“Muy Amable, Senor, y muchas gracias.”

At  home, a straight-legged hobble down the stairs.
Neosporin on the skinned and swollen knee,
Rum and Coke, Advil, Reumofan
in that order.
Arnica and Peyote gel rubbed in sore parts.
The safety and warmth of bed.
and eight hours respite
until that long climb up the stairs
to the last day of my own art exhibition.

It is hard getting old in any country,
but in Mexico,
cobblestones furnish
their own private Hell
that all gringos fall to,
sooner or later.

(The prompt was to tell about the last time someone was proud of you, but It’s hard to be proud in the dark on cobblestones in Mexico.)