Paul lost his grip.
Gravity lost its grip at the same time.

A piece of paper floats upward.
Paul rises, believing he can now levitate.

He reaches for the piece of paper.
It evades him.

The sentences written on the page
about twenty-first century liberty

cause a scream to erupt
from a mouth doodled in the margin.

Gravity reasserts itself
when Paul is fourteen feet above the ground.

It does not put in enough effort
to pull him and the page back to ground.

Paul walks on air and snatches the page.
The page shouts the Emancipation Proclamation.

The Gravity Oversight Board
gently returns gravity to Earth Normal.

Paul’s grounding is anticlimactic.
So the poem does not end here.

Freedom’s weight makes the page
too heavy for Paul’s hand.

He lets go.
The page hitches a ride on the wind.

copyright © 2020 Kenneth P. Gurney

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