black-and-white

i have always been afraid of falling
until i was falling 
and then
it was the easiest thing in the world

when i was 5
we went to a swimming pool
i wanted to jump into the water
but i was scared of the steps i had to take between the board
and the abyss
and my dad held out his arms 
and he said 
‘you love the water, punkin
i won’t let you fall’
and so i let go
and i found myself smiling
and i found myself flying

when i was 10
all the neighborhood kids were doing trust falls
i was afraid
and my dad said 
'these are your friends
they won’t let you fall’
and so i went from biting my lip
to giggling out loud
and i landed in the arms of everyone on the block

when i was 20
i jumped backward off a 200 ft cliff in canada
and at the top
i cried and cried
i begged my dad to let me go back down
and he said
'you’re the girl who loves a rush,
i won’t let you back down now’
and so i found myself freefalling
and i found myself laughing
and i found myself screaming with joy

when i was 22
i met a boy
and when i looked at him
i could feel my whole heart crying out
'i thought i knew what love meant
i thought i knew
i didn’t
until you’
and i was so afraid to fall
i was so afraid to let go and get hurt for the thousandth time
i was so afraid 
to willingly hand my heart over like a knife
he could cut my throat open with
if he really wanted to
and he said 
'it’s ok to fall
you might hit hard
but i’ll pick you up at the bottom
because i’ve fallen
too’

and i knew
i found the only other man
i will ever love
as much 
as my father.

—  i am my father’s daughter and my lover’s other half (m.n.g)