step off or step back?

Step back or step off?
Every edge presents a choice.

Perhaps that is why
edges are so compelling –
each is a temptation.

For the dVerse poetics prompt “edges and fringes” . I chose path #1: 1. Write a poem using the word edge.
I like the idea of edges, literal and metaphorical, because they’re frightening but empowering. They’re decision points that give you pause to think, while also presenting options.

Literal, physical edges are fascinating – I remember standing near the edge of the Bight many years ago, which is an absolute discontinuity (a step function, or first order transition for the technical people) – flat red-yellow earth on one side as far as the eye could see, endless ocean on the other and a vast vertical drop between them. Standing on an edge like that, you can’t help but think… what if I just stepped off?

15 Comments

Filed under musings, poem

15 responses to “step off or step back?

  1. I like your succinct poem and your rationale for choosing path #1. Standing in place isn’t an option for long, especially for the fidgety, and moss doesn’t take long to creep up if you aren’t. Bonus points for your explanation 🙂

  2. Edges as temptation is a slightly haunting thought.. Especially with that lovely photo from the Bight. We went to the edge of the desert and found the Bight when we crossed the Nullabor. It’s a magical place – two such different kinds of wilderness kissing.

    • That’s a wonderful description – “different kinds of wilderness kissing”.
      The trip that this photo was taken on started as a day-trip down the Great Ocean Road from Melbourne, but as that didn’t take long enough we kept going – and ended up at the WA border. 😀 It is indeed a magical place.

  3. close to my
    edge
    cut up
    and avoid
    unwanted unneeded
    confusions

  4. Hi kate , arthritis flaring, typing excruciating, but good work!

  5. I think the edges are always tempting…

  6. great poem, Point Perpendicular is the one where I felt the pull into Jervis Bay … it’s a strong feeling to just step off …

  7. Nature is amazing. So many edges… some smoothed by time. 😉

  8. My inclination is to always step back. I get sick (not phobic) at edges with long drops. I stood at the edge one of of the Twin Towers once–incomprehensible and frightening. But sometimes stepping off the edge of the comfortable is necessary and even joyful in our upward-and-onward progress.

    • I’m much more uncomfortable high up in/on man-made structures than natural ones. I get a sharp pain in my feet. I always step back from literal edges, but I agree about metaphorical ones – sometimes you just have to step off.

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