Before I walked-off the highest step in this world,
I stood inside the gondola of a hot-air balloon,
held space and tasted nebula like pomegranate seeds.
Star-clusters raced away, melting like snow
on blacktop. The taste on my lips was a galaxy’s
that no man had been to before. I wore
a suit pressurized with pure oxygen to
keep me guarded from frostbite, high-winds,
what little I knew of heartbreak in Outerspace.
I couldn’t tell I’d been falling faster than my voice:
in love with my susceptibility to the ground,
in love with the yielding of my wrists to your grip.
Sling them over my head, I said, like a parachute.
I’ll float the rest of the descent back to Earth.