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Berns and Valais

A poem by Mullen Metcalf

I’m watching the mountains from
the back of my skull
while Dan the German Tourist
buries his nose in the magazine left behind the train seat.

He doesn’t see me drifting through the
stars and clouds of
fog and freeze,
rivers and trails of Grindelwald,
Switzerland unfolding in my peripheral vision.
Dan the German Tourist
doesn’t look up
to see my spirit
strike down through the
valleys and hills.
He doesn’t see
my fingers brushing through the
the streams and lakes.

My guts stand alone at the
tippy-top of pale blue peaks,
waving like a gooey clothesline.
They don’t call out to me—
they are home
and want nothing to do with the
empty shell
that falls past
(skin and bones and shoes and all)
and melts into the thick black dirt.


Featured image by Johannes Hofmann on Unsplash