When I looked up
and saw his wild experiment with air,
fear sounded
the crooked depths of ancestry,
sent out sickening rings.
Clouds wheeled.

Abandoned to the mad chronic
longing for flight,
with the courage of his delusions,
he had swung and climbed
to the very top
and leapt.

The sweet slight body caught
in silhouette
before the arc before the fall;
sense and sinew taut
he was at the mercy
of his fingertips.

The tree held. The boy
slid back to earth on tearing leaves,
grinned a simian grin
– a little wide –
and climbed
and swung again.