It’s the vertigo
right at the summit
that teaches you

it’s the rappelling
that’s killing
more than
the actual climbing.

Mountain Peak With Drifting Clouds by Caspar David Friedrich

Brendan prompts on the penultimate part of a journey at toads made me think of mountain climbing. How reaching the summit would be the penultimate part, with the last one being rappelling back to the ground is the final step (and being the most dangerous part).

April 29, 2017

19 responses to “Vertigo

  1. Dude. That was brilliant! ~How you hid “Where to go?” in the title. Smart, smart writing. See. That’s what you can do with tiny poems. Tuck in your secrets.

    I love those clipped lines in the second stanza, giving it that choppy vibe: “that’s killing / more than.” And thanks for the exposure to a new word, “rappelling.”

    Again, I love the question you hid in the title … Should he brave the climb back down, should he stay up on the mountaintop right where he is, or should he try to fly and possibly plummet to his death? So smart, B. So smart.

  2. Ha. One feels the repelling going on here too. The way down very difficult. Thanks so much, Bjorn. Hope all better with eye. Amazing how you go! k.

  3. I knew someone was reading my mind while I climbed the repelling tower in combat training. This reads just like that–figuratively and literally (without the actual dying, of course).

  4. Thank you, Bjorn. It’s been as long time since I have thought of climbing a mountain, let alone actually climbing one. Never have I climbed on that I needed to rappel back down.

  5. Ha! Neat – and wise. It is something I’ll never want to do, but I have been told by climbers that coming back down is the most dangerous phase.

  6. I had never even considered the dangers of returning to earth after the climb. This is brilliant.

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