for Deb D’Angelo
In a recent dream, I flew—
not so much for pleasure,
though it was that, also, rather
because it was clearly the next
thing to do.
On the trail, I did, perhaps, fly
for a moment,
my body spread into the air
above the rocky slope.
There was, maybe, a second
of curiousness—an inkling of thrill.
But then the horrible fact
of gravity. I did not want
to open my eyes for a long,
long time. I did not cry then,
not when I saw my hands,
blackened and bloodied.
Not when my shoulder
refused to rise. Though it hurt,
I knew it would all be fine.
I did not cry at the sting of soap
and water in the library sink.
I did not mind the stares
of the patrons confused
by the sight of my ripped up tights.
The librarian offered to tend to me,
finding me salve and applying
the bandages, fitting them
to angles they didn’t want to fit.
It was the look in her eyes that did it,
the gentleness, the warmth.
As she hugged me
like a daughter, like a friend,
like a human, I sobbed into her hair,
so moved by her kindness,
how she cared for me with such tender hands—
and for a moment, I swear I flew,
unafraid of how I would land.