Monday, March 21, 2011

The Black Mornings Kiss.

So I took the weekend off.

to pass the time
and fill the gaping hole in my bank account,
and heart;
I have taken up a second job.
Monday through Friday
I am a carpenter.
I build homes.
I am the only college educated carpenter,
in all of East Baltimore.

on the weekends,
I have taken to the great blue and grey above.
I have signed on
with a traveling crew of Sky Cowboys.
Derelicts, degenerates,
adrenaline junkies,
every one to the man.
But the odd thing,
is the nature of the work.
We install "green roofs"
on the top of office buildings.
For all intents and purposes,
we are gardeners in the sky.
It's the getting of the garden up to the clouds
where the danger,
and fun begins.
And this is how I spend my weekends.

We live in nice hotels
rise well before the sun,
manage 90 ton cranes,
multiple tractor trailers of material;
negotiate gale force winds,
and dance out on the edge
high above terra firma,
with only the embrace
of a safety harness
and a steel tether cable
to lessen the drop
back down to reality.

I handle the safety rigging.
Which requires me
to go out on the ledge first,
free from the steel umbilical cord
that keeps us all safe.
I get to dance free,
in the clouds.

I get to lean hard into the wind,
free from the ties that bind.
I get to test the winds heavy hand on my chest,
and find a mutual trust
between myself,
and the fickle mood of mother nature.
I have the insane pleasure
of climbing the sides
of concrete and steel;
looking for the places
where lines can be tied off
so that the crew can work safe.
Their lives
are in my broken hands,
and my innate ability
to ascertain,
just the right place
that won't let go,
if they were to make the mistake
of going over the edge.

Most of this motley band
have gone over the edge
a long time ago;
and I am now a rank and file member.
We are all
as our leader reminds us,
"fucked in the head."
You earn your way into the club,
via dissolution with life
or a need to feel your heart pound
and synapses fire
with the urgency
of top fuel dragster.
And the only way out of the club,
is the quick way down;
and the rough kiss
of Mother Earth
or the roof of a parked car.

are bestowed
with monikers
based on conditions.
There has been
Solar Alley,
Spanish Sahara,
and the Widow Maker.
Much like mountain climbers of old,
the first man to the top
gets to give the place its name.
I have named
every job that I have worked.
I find ways,
to ensure
that I am the first man
out of the hatch.
I want
and need
that first kiss
of the cold morning wind.
It is usually
in the dark and quiet.

Think back,
to your very first kiss.
Your eye's were closed;
you didn't say a word.
You just leaned in,
and found your way.
You never forget your first kiss;
and spend a lifetime
comparing every other,
to it.
They are all different,
first kisses.
You will have a number
of first kisses,
until you finally find the right one.
But their will always be that one.
You know it
deep to the core of your being.
And it is special,
a event,
a mile marker,
a talisman.

I suppose,
that my need,
and desire,
for that first
breath of the morning wind;
is nothing more
than my need
to recapture
that first kiss
that has sent me here into this exile.

I stand there
out on the edge,
precariously balanced
all that I am
and all that I am not;
and I can taste her lips again,
for one brief
with my eyes closed
and my soul,
full and free.

So I took the weekend off.
I turned down a job,
close to home;
and left the crew hanging.
And I find myself
left wanting,
and needing,
that sweet first kiss
of the cold, dark, morning air.

It is all I have
these trying days.
It is the one thing,
that makes me feel human,
and alive.

I think
taking a weekend off
was a good thing.
I am getting to comfortable
dancing in the clouds.

On top of Spanish Sahara,
a load broke free.
The man in charge of the tack line
(not one of us, not one of our crew)
felt the heavy pull of the load
taking flight in the wind.
He let the line go free.
And a weight
heavier than my heart
was loose above the deck.
Men scattered in all directions.
The need for self preservation
took over.
They ran for cover and safety.

The closest members of my crew,
two stupid souls,
put themselves
between the building and the edge.
They ran to the conflict,
and put their own safety aside,
to ensure
that others might make it home safe.

I was one of the two stupid souls
between the building and the edge,
wrestling the heavy
uncontrolled weight
back into submission.

I am not afraid
of anything up there
in the clouds.
But I am terrified
of living
down here.

So I took this weekend off.
I think
taking a weekend off
was a good thing.
I was getting to comfortable
dancing in the clouds.

I cannot replace
a lost kiss,
with the dark wind of the morning.

I cannot replace
a life lost,
by putting myself
the heavy weight
that swings freely about me;
and the concrete and steel reality,
that what I had is gone,
and never coming back.

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