I wanted sky. That was my ambition. And now I’m being tugged
Up a small steel mountain,
A burly chain beneath the car hauling my weight
And a trail of my fellow aspirants. Poised at the top, we waver.
Then the slow turn downward,
The gathering speed, hurtling
Toward the earth from which, with a paste of mud and spit,
In that one foreboding
Story, the god
Made the man.
Upward again, turning and writhing in air, my body become a space
Where, as in love,
The great forces stream through:
Space, wind, light, the seconds blurring by like years.
O my god, I hear the cries of those around me as we are borne up and
Down and up and down,
Our breath three
Let this not end, my body says and, at the same time, Let it be done,
As with a sudden jerk, a brake
Catches, the train slows, we arrive
At the platform milling with the shades
Called the living. Down the ramp. Back to a frail rain
Glossing popcorn stands, the carousel’s splintered mirrors, and
—Hey! It’s some dude
Dressed as Sinestro from the Legion of Doom, his power ring strobing,
Scattering the crowd.
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Roberto Bolaño, Ann Beattie, Janet Malcolm, and more.