Before you learn how to fly, learn how to fall.
If you’re learning how to fall, people will think you’re in love. Before you try to love, learn how to forgive. You may also consider practicing in the mirror how to unclench your jaw. It makes you look stubborn.
Before you can forgive, you’ll need a well of patience. Teach in a public school.
But patience requires humility. Consider everything you believe may be wrong. This is easier if you’re already in love. The key is to trust everyone. The frequency with which you’re lied to will also give you opportunities to forgive.
Just don’t conflate forgiveness with second chances; otherwise, you’ll end up too cynical to love. If you insist on believing in second chances, you’ll need a loose interpretation of how god addresses desire.
Try rejecting outright the idea of fate. Probably, you’ll recognize the impossibility of sharing your consciousness. Life will ebb.
You’ll be dragged below the tide, and the crush of waves above will fold brain into belly. If you relax against the rush—if you can hold your breath—the waves will crash.
New air will fill the tissue between bones, and, with your dry body on land, you’ll feel the weightless joy of loss.
This, I think, is a form of flying.
- The epigraph comes from Paul Simon's Learn How to Fall.
- This poem was first published in Public Pool.