Feigning a Fine Fettle

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This Final Fall


In a line of people filing out, I am last.

I tried to wait, to see the end, to stall,

Because I looked out at the gulfing space, vast,

Saw those before me, little specks, fall,

But joined them anyway, the time past

To stop and consider anything at all.


And of the things to consider, I had all

The days in the world before these very last

Moments between the window and the ground, but thoughts stall

When we, alive and granted, with all this vast

Sprawl ahead of us, fail to appreciate, fall

Into habit and tedium, make mistakes from the past.


Now, now that my life is rushing past,

I can, in the seconds left to me, see it all,

This building I leapt from, stood for the last

Instances before the jump, during my final stall.

The city gleaming, shimmering in the sun haze, expanding vast-

All, all of this I see as I inexorably fall.


And there is no recovery now from our free fall

As we plummet, like flailing little meteors, past

Awed, doomed faces, each one of them, all

Of them waiting until the very moment, the last

Second before they jump, before they stop the stall

That has hindered them on the edge of the gulfing vast.


And I see, accelerating towards us, a sea, vast

Of people milling below, watching us fall-

They have the luxury to consider the past,

To think on the things they have done and all

The things they never will, but of course the last

Thing they will ever do is reflect. They will forestall


Until there comes to them no more time to stall,

When they too must jump into the gulfing vast

Spaces, must leap without faith, fall

Without hope, hurtling with suspended haste past

Glittering galleries of all the cities of man, all

The horror, as we, reaching our end, collide at last.


So wait not until the last, lest you stall

For time too vast to ask, lest you too fall

With sudden abandon past the beauty, the terrible beauty of it all.


Give it to me straight.

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