“Striking Pavement,” an excerpt from Gravity by Lynne Schmidt

Striking Pavement

He holds my heart the way school children hold rocks.
His arm cocked at any time,
Ready to release.
And though I say he holds this like a rock,
My heart is something more of hand blown glass.
So I know when he lets go,
The world will shatter.
Gravity will pull me down with so much force,
It will set an anchor,
And I will shatter like a windshield in a car accident,
Like the one that killed my best friend.
My heart broke then.
I put it together with masking tape that’s not strong enough to hold posters on painted walls.
I put it together with super glue that washes off hands.
I put it together with duct tape,
With beer bottles,
With putty to fill in the cracks.
I have broken my glass heart so many times,
That maybe this time,
When he throws it and it strikes pavement,
It won’t shatter,
It will explode.

from Gravity