Up is like down

when I lie on my back:

hang my head off the bed,

stretch my legs up as high

as they’ll reach on the cool wall.

Hear my mom warn that the moisture

from my toes will tarnish the paint.

Do it anyway. Let my arms dangle down

till the skin stretches taut and tight. 


How does it look, World,

to see me stretched? Do your brows

crease in confusion? Why does a child

do child things


like hour-glass blood? I let it all

trickle down to pool red on my skin

and then quickly, flip up! Spring daisy

to let it all return from top of head

to tips of toes. Wiggle them on the carpet

until the joy of feeling comes home.


Eileen Ellis

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