This Close

Aren’t we all “this close”

to the edge of something?

We can think

ourselves to the brink

of insanity

starvation or satiety.

Just one step

from falling off the ledge,

one step back

from the edge to safety.

One move from landing

the job of dreams,

and open doors,

or flipping the last burger,

before hand on hip

you flip off the boss

and storm out the door.

As it closes,

he screams,

“You better never

come back here, son”

and you wonder,

what have I done?

One glance, smile,

handshake, swipe

from meeting the one

who might change your life,

mentor, tormentor,

soulmate, pretender,

trusting, second-guessing

that feeling in the center

of a gut

you’re never quite sure

is on your side.

One left turn between

going out for milk

for the kids to drink

and driving

right past the store,

not stopping,


tears streaming,

until you either wonder

what the hell you were thinking

or why you waited


when you feel more freedom

than you’ve felt in years

and you just roll on,

roll your window down

and start singing.

We’re one chance taken

from reaching fame

or having it taken away,

one gamble from fortune

or throwing it all away,

one bad throw of the dice,

one bad play,

one bet placed on bad advice.

a few paychecks,

one major illness,

one tragic near death

away from homeless.

One last straw

from pulling the trigger,

swallowing the whole bottle,

every pill,

keep digging a hole

we can never fill,

or finally see the light

and see life

for what it is.

We’re here to persist

not resist

the conditions of existence.

Stand still, stubborn,

refusing to change,

knock down solutions–

it’s easier to complain,

Is it easier to just

put up with the pain,

or abate it?

It’s insane

to refuse to choose,

but that’s a choice we make.

We’re all one thought,

one word,

one step, one turn,

this close to living out

a life full of shine

or crash and burn

from here on out,

slipping into the void

to avoid the noise,

those voices

that trip us up every time

and try

to send us over the line,

that edge.

This close.