Solitude is a bridge.

I clutch the railing and can see
a panorama of worlds—
the ancient child
the youthful vigilante
the compliant adult
the manifested—
I, on my bridge, pad about in the middle.
Well: not in the middle;

I’m removed from it all,

on this bridge that holds
only me and my mind palace,
no coherent reference point;
just my hands around the railing
and the sea below
which tosses and froths
where I cannot go.
Could I be akin to the sea?
Fluid in being and unexpected in candor;
but stable, as a whole. Stability, which is

only sometimes stable.

My bridge won’t collapse
but I might. As I tighten my palms
around the steel bar
it gives way too—
for nothing is solid.
We are all solitary.
Here objective is
possible; permissible, even,
but hopelessly contradictory
for in this sort of objectiveness
is complete subjection. So

I take the time

the time it takes
to learn my bridge.
To construct my own towers
untamed
by taller towers
more impressive.
In the midst of construction
I learn how

to know my oppressors

and remind myself that
oppression has no hold here;
except when it does,
when it’s projected upon my bridge
like a drive-in movie
I can’t help but watch
mouth-agape.

And from my railing

I’ll see the power cord
and watch, perplexed, as my hand
wraps around the thick stem
and jerks it away,
letting it fall to the candor sea.
Thusly shall

I reclaim control—

and so leave my bridge
to rejoin the worlds
to mark my fare amongst the others,
to see if candor really wins,
if stability exists. I’m not
always convinced.
Nor do I need to be.
That’s what my bridge is for
to which I shall return

inevitably.


The reader brings his or her own perspective to a poem. Here is mine:

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