Revised from 1995.
I got up grudgingly
just to see if the world had ended.
All night I had been wracked by dreams of treachery, seeing myself being pushed or thrown from a road painted on a cliff
into miles below that opened into dead space.
I could not see who or what shoved me
over the edge.
I could not see anything of the stop at the bottom.
There are more important things to notice
when facing the end of the world.
During the long drawing of breath as the body falls, so much sharpens the senses.
They then make one point upon which a body can land, piercing up from the killing ground,
opening deep waters in the rich soils that begin to flow across Death’s country.
I got up grudgingly.
I will not make that mistake again.
I will willingly wake from sleep
to seek desperate, praiseworthy knowledge —
one lives best when aware of the longing for that huge, deadly fall.