Flying

HemmingPlay

Perhaps I’m too cautious.
I accuse myself.

Perhaps it was my Calvanist upbringing,
that taught most pleasure was a trap

to snare the unwary pilgrim
into dark and venal depravities.

Perhaps I’m just too full of fear,
sometimes unable to tell the difference

between mortal risk—or simple embarrassment—
and the kind that teaches wisdom.

I’m the kind that would toss a rock
over the railing of a bridge

into the dragon scales of the ocean far, far below,
but also recoil from the risk, however small,

torn between a dream of freedom’s flight
and a pesky lack of wings,

knowing how easy it might be, like the suicide,
to fly as in his dreams,

smaller than a gull,
lured by fantasy for ever-so-brief a journey.

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