Gargoyle 11
cover etching by Scott McIntyre
publication date 5/25/1979


Free Fall

Jay Bradford Fowler, Jr.


Not steadied by my nervous hand
Will the moon ascend. Nor will the stars
Shine because my two eyes peer.
The trees will not throw down their
Cloaks because I cast my shadow
Into shadows. We move separately and I dwell
Where star does not lift nor moon
Make white so round. No star
Sees me. I go and go. No moon
Runs around me where I shine unknown
To woman, man or star.


And unknown I come called only by
My fear of night. The journey I would split
With a stone–its veins coiling
Like serpents in my wrist. Dreams
Hang like stones about
My neck. They want to be buried.
Blood starts at every pore
And my veins breathe all in a
Hurry about my mad skull seeking
Detonation. The blood I would drop
In the grave and not sack it about
Over my cruel bones and be and be.
The bones I would leave in the
Shadow of my body and that I would
Spread over the dark water
Like a crucifix. The dark water!
Rubbing its palms together
After me, smoothly.