Mount Baker

Your eyes are spoons and forks. You ask me, “Above the clouds, do you sleep?”
I nod and show you nylon sheets, metal rods, carabiners, every magic charm
needed for floating thousands of feet above. You ask me, “Do you enjoy

the harnesses and helmets? Is it the perspective you most enjoy?”
I don’t say it’s knowing you’re somewhere in this same world asleep
wishing I lay next to you that tethers me to this peak. You charm

me more than summit, goat, grappling hook, crampon; there is no charm
in risk if there’s nothing to risk, and you, you are everything. I can’t enjoy
the pulling away, the ascent, the rappel, the landfall, the unpacking, the sleep.

So sleep; charm my dreams. Like me, enjoy the sweet suspension.

Writing for YeahWrite’s weekly challenge. Click the badge above to read more poetry and flash fiction!

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13 Replies to “Mount Baker”

  1. It’s so nice to read someone who gets how important rhythm is to a piece like this. You breathe and stretch in all the right places and it’s lovely how you use the three words over and over in such a way that it doesn’t feel like I’m being hammered over the head with repetition.

  2. I love the idea that the person left behind doesn’t have your same interest, and while that doesn’t stop you, it changes the activity for you. I always think that the things that separate us can make the relationship richer though I could never explain it like you do here with the line: “I don’t say it’s knowing you’re somewhere in this same world asleep…”

  3. Ugh. Gorgeous. “There is no charm in risk if there’s nothing to risk.” I love the whole idea of risk as an expression of love.

  4. Climbing, especially in the cold, is so unappealing to me. I love that it’s only appealing to the narrator because of the love he left behind. This was beautiful.

  5. I really liked that the three stanzas flowed into each other, thoughts in motion, each dependent on the next section. I think it made the ending lines even stronger, as they were complete – bringing an end to the motion but leaving us with a final feeling of emotion.

  6. I love that it’s your narrator’s love that keeps them grounded, and not the act of leaving/climbing. That the leaving is only possible because of their love, waiting for them.

  7. god I miss climbing. The smell of chalk in the noonday sun. Aching muscles at the end of the day. Swinging out over the ledge and letting go; trusting your partner and your equipment. Camaraderie and being alone all at the same time.

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