“You have been severed from Christ, you who are seeking to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace.”
— Galatians 5:4
if you fall, it doesn’t mean
that what was above was any better,
you need not spread false hope
like you extend your mechanical wings.
there’s no sense in climbing back up,
cutting your hands on Mount Olympus,
to be struck by Zeus’ lightning;
you were better off staying on the ground.
if you fell in flame and silent fury
then have the sense to put your candle out
before standing in the middle of traffic,
at rush hour on a saturday sunset.
and if your charred remains,
black and brittle like broken bottle crosses,
shriek for forgiveness six years after Hiroshima,
the build a shrine in a bamboo grove:
each morning, jump off the roof,
until your bones shatter under the weight
of centuries of crimes—you’ve secretly committed,
and meditate an hour for every new bamboo shoot.
fold a thousand paper cranes and hang them
above my hospital bedroom,
and soon you will flicker out
like frost against a window pane
in the dead of the winter solstice.