Friday, July 6, 2012

The Price of Gravity

artwork: ralph murre

The Price of Gravity
by Ralph Murre

How much of this life do we own?
Payments are always coming due.
We are the ones who signed the papers,
but there’s something more,
there’s something that can’t be helped.
You and I look different
than we did in morning light.
Now we wade in lead boots 
and gather no speed
away from this dead center,
or toward something brighter.
Which is to say away from here,
where the embers have dwindled.
Which is to say we can fly only
with the creatures of dreams,
if we can fly at all.
The dreams will become family,
the dreams will become clan,
scattered like dust among stars
in the cages of our ribs,
in the cages of our cries,
in our breath in the night.
Sometimes the dreams may be of falling
and cold earth rushing to us,
but, travelers now,
they’ll call us travelers,
amid the dust
and the stars
where we’ve known the dark eclipse,
and we’ve flown with
those creatures of dreams
between galaxies.
We won’t be in lead boots
once we’ve started to dream.
We’ll no longer make payments
on things that hold us down.

This is not the end of this poem --
something pulls at us forever.

~ first published in Iconoclast