The Echo of What Remains Collected Poems of Wanda Lea Brayton
At the bottom of a shadowed gully,
there are stones enough
to weigh your pockets down.
Resist their allure.
They are not as desirous as you might think,
or the mountain would not have shunned them so,
shoving them into oblivion.
We all have cracks lurking beneath our surfaces -
don't ever believe the propaganda that you're alone.
Nothing is unbearable -
not death, not life,
not what hovers between.
There is no bravery, no heroism here -
there is only necessity and those things which linger
under conscious choices to take one step forward
or two steps back, away from the precipice.
Someone is coming to lend you their trembling hand,
to light this deep darkness with a single candle.
This poem was partly inspired by lines from the movie, "The Cheyenne Social Club" —
Henry Fonda's character said to Jimmy Stewart's character:
"I swear, you could be hangin' by your fingertips from the side of a cliff
and call it 'climbin' a mountain'".