I would walk a mile in every shoe,
Look through the eyes of every soul
Until I belonged to no one
And no one belonged to me,
Tied to no worldly possessions,
Possessing no earthly desires.
And I would understand humanity.
I would see the smallness of our daily races,
Throw wind to the scurry of ants disappearing
In the warm bricks, thread daffodils in their paths,
Making beautiful obstacles so roads were never easy,
I would collect the people with no country,
Cast a rod, reel them in from their colorful rivers,
Point to the imaginary lines
As their tired feet dangled,
No longer pressing into declared ground.
Show them the rounded world,
With no corners to fall from,
No ocean to drown in,
No mind to enslave.
I would churn the cumulus brew,
Blow the frothy tops,
Cool the warming layers,
Stash caches of hope in
There would be no gravity to pull at my
Shirtsleeves and skin.
No gravity to bring me down and hammer
Me into the ground.
My bones would breathe and I would grow tall,
Expand into weightless particles.
I would float and spin,
See the world as it should be:
A glorious marble of land and sea
And in it, a strange brew of love and sorrow.
But if I stayed in outer space,
I would lose my place.
I would miss my family.
The soft kisses and stormy weather.
The wholeness and holes in my heart,
The bones aching with connective tissue and
Fleshy fragility, the soft tick of time reminding me
Of the moment, the beauty that shows itself every day amid
The ugliness, the selfless acts committed
Without thought or proof.
I would miss the gritty earth.
The soil embedded in my nails.
The patient blooms of spring before an
The rocketman is lonely, so the song says.
And so, every morning
I build my days with pocketed perspective, fingering
The large earth with my head bent upward,
Watch the night sky fill with extinguished light.
Until one day, I will have to shed the skin I reside in
And hitch a ride on my satellite.
I imagine the view will be just fine.
-S. S. Hicks