Alcove House, Bandelier National Monument, New Mexico

Thinking today
of the cave high in the cliff
above Frijoles Canyon,

how I needed to climb
140 feet straight up
to see it,

how I tore off
up the trembling ladders
bearing my fear of heights

on my back the whole way,
facing into the rock
as I rose

until I faced the scooped out
back wall of the cave,
walked to the kiva

and looked inside, how I then
sat for a while looking out

I had to turn and step
into space backward
140 feet in the air

to begin the descent,
how I had to prepare
to fall, to fall, to fall

just that one
first step and how I felt
upon finding it —

and what I felt like
once back on the floor of
Frijoles Canyon,

how I ran back up the trail
to the parking lot — thinking today
of how it can be that 

once upon a time
I took my fear, bundled it up,
took it with me to the place of fear

and did not die —

how is it that this escapes me daily,
how is it that I cannot
stop being a coward?

About Tony Brown

A poet with a history in slam, lots of publications; my personal poetry and a little bit of daily life and opinions. Read the page called "About..." for the details. View all posts by Tony Brown

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