“Beyond Gravitas” by Jarold Ramsey, published in Jump Straight Up, released in November 2023, has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize.
Please enjoy the poem, and feel free to leave a comment.
by Jarold Ramsey
They said it couldn’t be done
or more precisely he shouldn’t try it
—not, surely, at three score and fifteen!
—not, please, with your bionic hip!
But what was he to do, with his grandchild,
who had been taking Circus lessons,
showing off a repertory of stunts
but couldn’t manage a headstand?
Head to the floor, hands pressing downward for balance,
elbows akimbo, knees hoisted and briefly
cradled on the elbows, then legs slowly lifted,
straightened, wavering, but marking time
beyond gravitas over his pulsing head.
There now kiddo, that’s how it’s done,
said grandpa the old show-off,
seeing spots as he clambered down to earth,
already thinking about the next family lesson,
with Leo, Harper, Samantha, Maddy, and Willa,
all conspired on the floor with him,
all dangerously upside down for love,
twelve legs straight up waving like saplings,
reaching for the leaves and the birds!
from Jump Straight Up by Jarold Ramsey (The Poetry Box, 2023)
nominated for The Pushcart Prize by Shawn Aveningo Sanders, editor/publisher