I have forever harbored inside me a fascination with edges.
My first memories are of standing on a cliff, wanting oh so badly for it to crumble under my feet. I saw a line separating earth and sky, and an urge rose in my chest to blur it.
This feeling of always being on the very tip of reality, wishing I could lose my balance and plummet, only intensified as I grew older. I found such sweetness in thoughts of stepping over sidewalk cracks to plunge into a world with nowhere left to stand on.
At the same time I was afraid normal boys didnt think of falling as I did, didnt want its escape from the cold, rigid ground. So I never mentioned it to anyone. But I didnt want to stop the desire blossoming inside me. I feigned interest in hiking and went out looking for the highest places to lose myself.
the throng is seething below, mindless chat
chasing the sky with their bright round bodies --
wingless martyrs caught each tiny breath of air
a moment of epiphany
when your rubbery skin punctures
and the soul escapes.
There is no element light enough to lift me away,
no instrument to sever the strings that earth
my tiny anklets --
I sway with the seasons
as if I am surrounded by an ocean,
unable to tread water fast enough to run,
nor find the reach to break the surface
where those regrets float momentarily,
winking in the sunlight before they coast away,
waiting for my realisation --
they pollute my conscience
until I am ready to let them leave.
I blow watery kisses as I watch them fly --
tiny polka dots dodging clouds,
out of sight.
"Papa, look Papa! A boy!"
My papa stood dazed for a moment, dust billowing at his legs, his eyes teetering along the field. It wasn't until later that evening he told me he hadn't understood what I had seen. What he had seen.
With grass tickling the backsides of my legs, I bounded toward the boy, "What are you doing? Are you okay?"
As I approached him, I felt his skittish eyes rake across my every movement. With his ten-year-old arms slung inside the gaping maw of a fence and darkened feathers pasted along the creases of his face; he looked squarely at me. I could hear his bird-bones quaking at my voice, he pushed harder against the fence. I winced for him.
"Hold still, we'll get you out," I turned back to my papa who stood alongside the road, "Papa," I pleaded, "Please! Help him!"
Reaching out, I touched his shoulder, "Don't be afraid. We're going to help you."
He didn't pull away from me. I thou