That gap

I clicked on the page

she held out to me

as if I were a pigeon

pecking seeds from her

cupped palm –

 

here,

te-te-te,

here –

 

I was searching for

the scientific term

for that gap between

rocks that elbow

splintered

bones into the sky

and cannot be crossed

without rope –

 

caving is a whole different story,

a whole different story.

 

The author had spent

11 years getting the terminology

right,

 

11 years!

 

to press

PUBLISH

on a plain text site

with not one

picture to help

me imagine –

 

an infant goes from the womb

to high school in 11 years,

 

a Perch from spawn

to death unless

it happens

upon a net,

 

echoes,

silences.

 

 

A lot happens.

A lot.

 

On this day,

for example,

Liberty

arrived in New York

looking for a fresh adventure

her 350 pieces

in 200 cases,

 

a gift from the same France

that Britain was defeating

today,

many years before that –

 

one wo/man’s enemy, etc.

 

Meanwhile a Senator took

a deep dive into profiteering,

the war was in full swing,

Bing Crosby and the Ken Darby singers

sang

‘Sunday, Monday or Always’,

and Al Dexter and his Troopers

took a ‘Pistol Packin’ Mama’ to number one

when Truman found a secret, so secret that someone

had to call and ask him

politely, probably even

patriotically,

to divert his attention and he said:

hey okay, I’ll look away, and

 

what would Trump have done,

I wonder?

 

GRIKE

a deep,

narrow, near vertical slot with almost parallel sides

in a rocky outcrop

caused by solution

along a joint,

 

a fissure –

 

in a remote desert

mushroom

40,000 feet high

hovering as

Earheart crossed the Atlantic

 

on this day,

 

a little boy fell

from Enola Gay,

levelling five square miles –

and it was only because

the pilots could not see Kokura for the dust

that they went

South –

 

you know,

 

I think I’ll be

a raven that lives 69 years,

a talisman against invasion, perched

on the Tower of London and

looking out at France –

 

Dionne Lew

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