Eleanor Ellis
Topography

Perhaps because we are in a valley
I never realized it was about mountains.
I never saw you there,

holding the light. I never thought of you
as the sort of person
to stand up to the dawn.

Somehow elevation changes the land.
I don't know if it's the contours--
the way it becomes easier to draw a map
with all the prepositions that now
belong to your life:

up and down, down and up.

It's easier to see people step away
on a mountain, and harder
to watch them leave. on the
plain, it's simple:
the silhouette stays, but

walking down the mountain
you find yourself with too much air
full lungs and empty heart,
it is hard to measure your steps.

you never enunciated that fall,
but the landscape changes color
in spite of you