Gravity says “Yes.”

The tree says “No.”

Gravity pulls.

The tree will not let go.

They are locked in a struggle.

Both of them strain.

One is sacred.

The other is profane.

Gravity pulls again and again.

The golden globe shifts.

The tree raises its limb.

The globe is a flare.

It was flung from afar.

It is here for an answer.

It is not here for long.

Once it burns out.

It will cease to exist.

Gravity pulls.

The tree tightens its grip.

Heat from the globe blackens its bark.

Singes its leaves.

“Be the beacon” the tree repeats to itself.

Gravity persists in its pull.

But, it is not to blame.

Gravity does what it does.

Acting on instinct.

It pulls on things.

Draws them in near.

It traps gases for our atmosphere.

It wrings rain from the sky.

Holds it in place.

It gives us our oceans, ponds, rivers and lakes.

It presses seeds firmly against the dirt.

They sprout.

It gives us grasslands and forests.

It keeps us in orbit around our one sun.

At just the right distance.

It creates the conditions for life.

It even gives us a moon to accompany our nights.

Gravity is a life-sustaining force.

We leap.

It worries.

It tugs at our heels.

It likes us grounded.

It likes us close.

We can.

And, we do.

Test its commitment.

Again and again.

Leave our feet.

But, we always land.

Gravity is a law.

But, as we all know.

There are.

And, this is.

One of those times.

When a law must be defied.

That is why we have trees.

They assist in our dissent.

Lift us branch by branch.

Widen our perspective.

Let us see.

We are subsumed in a system.

One of an interconnected many.

Remind us.

We are free to exit.

They let us feel the breeze at a higher height.

Moisten our face in a cloud of mist.

Touch the sky.

Wonder why.

Ask big questions.

“Am I more than this?”

They promise us adventure just beyond their last branch.

Dare us to climb higher.



These things are within us.

They are within him.


He grabs a hold of the first branch.

Presses his Puma against the trunk of the tree.

Rocks his body to the count of three.

Images flash before him.

Black and blue bruises.

A bloodied nose.

Another broken bone.

His foot grows heavy.

Falls away.

All alone.

He hangs from the branch.

Gravity pulls.

The bark feels harsh.

It hurts his hands.

He gives in.

Drops to the ground.

Circles the tree.

Steps over roots.

Kicks at the moss.

Spies a shortcut.

A rock.

He picks it up.

Winds up.


Misses the golden globe.

He picks up another.

It slices the air.

Leaves tear.


He picks up another.

Adjusts his aim.

Branches crack.

Fall away.


He picks up another.


Hits the golden globe.

Fissures form.

Fan out.



The sound pierces the deepest depths of his hand-covered ears.

And, if he were atop the tree.

He would see.

On the playgrounds, porches and parking lots of his community.

A simultaneous skyward rise of a hundred plus pair of eyes.

But, he is not.

He is on the ground.

And, something is falling.

It is falling fast.

Gravity has it in its grip.

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