Poems & Essays

22 Apr

At the End of Our Hike

General/Column No Response

I carry a collection of sticks for my son:
wand, backup wand,
walking stick, horse,
blaster, sword.

In my head, Neil deGrasse Tyson
narrates last week’s planetarium show:
Wherever you are, it feels
like you’re at the center
with everything else speeding away.

My son dashes ahead
to where the trail bends
inevitably away from me,

and vanishes with a swish of ferns.

I’m left in the golden glimmer
of dust kicked up in his haste.

Once, everything existed as one,
clutched in the tight fist of the universe,
my son, his sticks, these breaths,
this ache.

Each tiny particle
gleams, suspended
in a splintered ray of sun.

Then, bang!
For billions of years, we drift
further and further apart.

This is our life:
full speed,

then float.

I shift the sticks
to fill the space left when he slipped
his small hand from mine

and try to catch up.



Lindsay Rutherford lives and writes in Edmonds, WA. She studies fiction at the Writers Studio and works as a physical therapist at a local hospital. Her fiction and poetry can be found in Lunch Ticket, Medical Literary Messenger, Poplorish, and WA129+.

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