How to Fly by Lisa Alletson (HOW TO Series)

Silver Birch Press

henri-matisse-rare-vintage-1997-modernist-large-fine-art-silkscreen-print-les-oiseaux-1947-2632How to Fly
by Lisa Alletson

Love the cliff face first.

Measure and weigh
the hands that shackle your ankles
holding you back.

Test the troposphere
with a snowdrop
sprung from your glow.

Leave out a bowl
of black holes
to consume gravity.

Inhale the sweetness
of the wet blade of grass
between you and freedom.

Build a pair of wings
out of tendons and memories
with your naked fingers.

The wings will stick
to your body at first —
low and frightened.

Towel them down
with your childhood blanket
to soak up burdens.

Don’t forget
to take your children —
past and future.

(They will know if you leave without them.)

Don’t forget your strength.
Never forget your strength.

Let go.

IMAGE:Les Oiseaux (The Birds), silkscreen by Henri Matisse (1947).

LisaAlletsonPhotoABOUT THE AUTHOR: Lisa Alletson writes poetry using stark imagery inspired by the political, geographic, and cultural…

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