On Taking the Stairs

I just started a Master's program in counseling. Six full days in urban Seattle, lots of stairwells!

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On Taking the Stairs


There are so many reasons,
the blood rush,
the jelly legs,
you get a sense of place,
twenty floors up
without cables and electricity
you’ve earned it
penthouse pleasure.

I love seeing others,
exchange the introvert’s nod,
like to imagine
kisses in stairwells,
trumped up errands
well timed.

Even in the most sophisticated
buildings, the same innards
are exposed, mini ships' wheels,
controlling water and gas lines,
the same copper and steel,
they all smell like submarines,
sealed secrets.

Deprivation tanks,
a pause among chaos,
I pick my nose and
wrench panties from between cheeks.
I have done handstands on landings
and sung, imagining
my voice piped like cool air.

Lanyards with nametags and rank
swing like metronomes,
stairs are the great equalizer,
CEO and intern,
maid and guest,
all, moving muscle
and bone, skeleton ascent.