Poetry from Emma Eisler


Flight and Fall


Give me a ticket to your carnival show

I want to watch you whirl through the big-tent

I’ll sneak in; ride on the wave of ten-dollar perfume and fallen dreams

Perpetual chatter, ersatz happiness

Performers whose illusions lure only the lonely

I’ll wait with you backstage

You’ll whisper in my ear,

That’s the boy who flies the highest, but he’ll fall the fastest

That’s the girl who started out selling pocket candy and possibility”

And which are you?” I’ll ask

You’ll look away and answer, “The girl who loves to dance”

But I already knew that

I’ll look at your arsenic eyes and licorice hair

At your tapping foot that’s itching to be free

Just like the rest of you

You’re the girl who loves to dance

So much she’ll die dancing, frail legs spinning

Hummingbird heart whirring in her final thrill

The lights and colors pull you away, on stage

And you never bothered to ask, “Which are you?”

Too entranced by the circus of your desire

Tunnel vision of all you wish to do

But if you’d asked, I’d answer,

I’m the boy who loves to watch, so much he’d die watching,

Drown in the scent of cotton candy,

Spiraling flight of trapeze artists wishing for wings”

But even if you asked, you wouldn’t hear me anyway

Because for you, love has always been a softer shade

Than longing 

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