When I Go Falling

Tuesdays I fall from burning buildings.
Quickly, in the air, I assemble my wings.
I turn and twist and think about how fires get started, how children aren’t allowed to play with matches, and adults just shouldn’t.
My wings are going to be a rich, milky green. I see the shade I want on the lawn and pop my whole body goes the color.
Mama said fire has a sterilizing effect, and that the best way to clean is to burn yourself alive.
Why do I take everything so literally?
No, we’re not talking suicide, don’t go getting your pocket notebook out, you big therapist. There’s a difference between falling and falling with intention.
My wings are halfway done. I need bone. As the ground gets closer I imagine tree branches and snap they’re glued to my back.
I wanted to fly into the sun. I am further from the fire, but closer to the burning. Ashes, ashes, we all fall down.
The truth is, I was pushed.
The truth is, I floated out of my body and pushed myself.
And no, we’re still not talking about suicide.
My wings begin to flap. I heave them up and down, my muscles groaning. They beat against my body. I do not change my angle. I am held to my meteorite ways, falling to earth, and I won’t veer off course. Go ahead, try to push me in another direction – you don’t have the science.
I grew wings because I wanted to be a new kind of fallen angel.
I never said I was going to rise up. You still don’t need that pocket notebook, I still don’t need your diagnosis.
Going now like spit from the sun’s mouth, I fly myself into the ground.


16 thoughts on “When I Go Falling

  1. Hey. I am (was) a therapist. I couldn’t take my eyes off your wing-building long enough to get out my little notebook and pen. All who fall didn’t jump. (Maybe I pushed you) Everyone who dashes themselves into the ground is not suicidal.

    Very nice. Love this one. Your writing is hot today.

  2. You really are, in this,
    stretching your wings.
    But perhaps, “trying on
    new wings” would be
    more appropriate. And

    I am certain that you will do nought
    but soar, no matter where you find
    the bones and the fibers and the
    membranes for your wings.

    I welcome this new bird, this
    new Icarus-thing that I see
    before me, this one who
    tempts the winds and
    gives the sky her middle
    finger, even while she flaps…

    1. I love every line of this, particularly the last few – “gives the sky her middle finger.” That’s so delightfully crude. I can only hope this is what I’m doing, you put it into words so well 😉 Thanks Johnny!

Thoughts? I love those.

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