Painted Smiles

Having an open heart is like driving;
is like trying to decide between the last fry
and a head start; is like tightrope walking

between two lovers who hold themselves
at length to keep you off balance. Every time
I feel this slack sway between my toes,

I am tempted to stop and beg those entangled
passions' reprieve. They must know how
they hold half of the best part of me, each,

so tantalizingly close
to grasp that it nearly splits me
in two to keep my eyes

on the horizon. Having an open heart
is no different than defying gravity;
no matter how practiced

the adjustments, the wind blows,
fragrant, and, slave to gravity, we
fall. Always, we fall.
Written and read during the workshop at tonight’s commonwealthslam.