Learning how to fall is learning how to fly

Enchanted as a child, opening
the curtains onto snow, still in my slippers

I step over the threshold and my right foot
slides forward – involuntary skater –

stone steps rising to meet my soft body
descending into the fact of gravity

and she knows the earth will catch her – cool, wet
white coating my back, arms, legs in a crust

of fresh crystals so I am more awake
than I've been in long months, planted now

in the season and – no harm done – anchored
by cold … I've fallen in slow motion, fan-dancing

a snow goose, air swirling around me,
buoyant and granular – and all time is stilled

in this moment and here I am, alive
in the cinema of winter, feathered

into such lightness that I can lift off
and fly over the snow-dusted valley,

borne by the elegant engineering
of my muscles and bones, beak stretched wide,

honking with bewildered happiness.

Posted: Sat 15 Jul, 2023