February 21, 2008
By Christopher Ding, Rochester, MI

I used to roll down hills,
Thick mats of summer grass that grew
Bamboo-like under rains of April and
Rays of June
So when you lied on it, it cushioned
Lifted you above the ground until
Grass snaked through your hair and
Flag-stabbed unsuspecting scalp—
An itch
Made moving necessary.

So I’d roll
Down an accelerating repetition of shadow-shelled
Foliage and eye-spear radiance,
Churning and sick-cycling
Stomach juices that wanted out
But those I held back
Under gags from worm-ridden earth
And summer ooze whose
Startles even bees and frogs in my
Loud wake reaching bottom
Here everything stops to
Deaf silence deafening the stillness waiting my
Deep breath
Prolonged blink
Obsidian Gorgon eyes on golden sun silk—
Before the world
Moved on.

I used to roll down hills
Because Mom said I shouldn’t,
But Life said I should,
Since gravity made it possible
And because
I felt like it.

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