Back then I danced above the void

Dazzling myself with my daring

So delighted to be young

And strong, defying gravity. I posed,

One hip forward, like some

Model for a fashion shoot

On the Eiffel Tower, offering

Courage, my courage,

The bridge all gapped and gaping

And the river churning far below,

And me, in the dignity of youth,

The pride of me, here, now.

Me there, then, distant,

Laughing at fear, eyes on the far side,

Only the air below me.

This is for Lillian at dVerse who has asked us to write about bridges. Sort of.dVerse is a nice place to hang out. Check it out.


Bridge haibun – for dVerse

I cross the bridge every day, almost without noticing it. I notice the river – the changing tide means it’s different every day. I exclaim at the height of the water, lapping under the bridge at high tide; or the wide glistening banks of mud at low tide. I notice the library at one end of the bridge, storing knowledge, and the old warehouse at the other – storing nothing, now. I notice the birds – flocks of starlings tonight, flying synchronised patterns over the water – now a wave, now a whale, now a cloud – or gulls hanging in the air, or swooping low over the surface of the river. In the summer there may be children jumping off the low wall along the bridge into the river water. They turn up at high tide, daring each other, laughing at the danger. In the winter there are only fishermen, silent and still as winter air. Perhaps we rarely notice bridges. We were there, we are here, we crossed that river. We neglect the thing that carried us.

River swift below
Birds wild sky sailing above
Bridge bearing me home