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Here’s a poem I recorded on my phone the other day. Enjoy! You can also read it beneath.

 

 

Talking on tightropes

(inspired by Philippe Petit, and his high wire walk of the twin towers in 1974)

 

They arrested him

For walking a tight rope

Between the twin towers

With nothing attached

Nothing to catch him

Should his balance waver

But he’d practised

He didn’t attempt this feat

Without knowing the line was a fine one

 

Yet we barely dare talk

On such fine lines

Attaching ourselves to hashtags

That declare our side

But there are no straight lines in nature

Even the blackest and whitest of them

Blur when you get closer

Alive or dead?

I know I for one

Have spoken to someone

On the other side

In my mind, I’d never deny

Their body is gone

But something

Something lingers on

And if you’ve ever watched a dawn

Creep up on night

Bit by slight bright light

You’ll know you could never

Stop the clock and say

Before was night and Now

Is day

But we pretend it’s all so clear

Too lazy to listen

Or dare to respect

A view that’s not #metoo

There are too few of us

Stringing up wires between the sides

Where the risk itself

Is what keeps things alive

Of course nobody wants to fall –

But not moving at all?

 

For forty five minutes

He worked that wire

And now the twin towers

No longer exist

Because we’ve underlined lines

Instead of erasing them

Chiseled the edges

Instead of softening them

We don’t have to talk on tightropes

We can talk on shores

Where sand and sea endlessly meet

Changing the landscape beneath our feet which delight

In the differing degrees of wet and dry

And warm and cold

Because the moon and her tides know

Even what’s land and what’s sea

Isn’t as clear as the maps would have us believe