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The Most Malicious of Brinks

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It would take more than just my fingers and toes
To count how many times I’ve been close to the edge.
While my eyes are shut tight and my hands are shaking in fear,
I flirt with an edge drastically different
But altogether the same.

I search for anything to focus on.
Something to distract me from the constant warnings from my mother behind me.
Not the sparse foliage, the sparrows above, nor the Hoover Dam bound water,
Can bring me out.

It’s as is if her words have materialized
And are pushing me, slowly but surely, closer,
Until my toes curl on the decision.
My eyes drift downward to where the bottom has come into focus.

I can now see cobras intertwined in each other
Hissing their venomous salutations.
Shelves that go on for miles, but are empty,
Taunt me with the false promise of opportunity.
The gramophone nestled into the corner rotates endlessly,
Even though nothing but faint grinding can be heard.
The Sunday morning sermons take on a grave and much too vivid reality.

Before the soft scent of sawdust and brimstone can win me over,
A small rock darts down to the fires.
It feels like hours until I hear the sharp crack at the bottom
Which brings me back to the countless competitions my younger brother and I had on the docks.
More importantly,
I remember the smile that rarely appears on his face.
Nothing more than the movement of a few facial muscles in the past
Saves my life,
And allows to me to keep going,
Everyday just for him.





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