The Snake and the Precipice

Reaching out from within the tree,
The snake slithered closer to me,
Yellow with black stripes encircling its body,
I felt it gaining on me.

But the faster I ran, the bigger it grew.
Because, even as a worm,
The boy knew
That living inside trees were lives beyond his own,
Though never could he have imagined the monsters that could grow.

So we held each other close,
Pretending to be a shield.
Impenetrable, as long as no one yields.
But as we walked away from it,
The cracks began to appear.
So the snake moved in closer,
Sensing our fear.

Confused, we turned our backs to it,
And simply hoped it would go away,
This snake hissing behind our every step.
But I could sense the panic we all felt
as we walked toward the Mountain’s ledge,
Arms locked together like a human chain.

And finally there, staring at the precipice,
Wearing fear on our face like the masks children make,
The edge crumbling under the heaviness of our collective feet,
The snake came closer,

Then, in our weakest moment,
It pounced at us,
Thinking, perhaps, that we would scream,
Or even choose the precipice.

Indeed, it seemed as though fear would win,
And our connection, this human chain,
Began to slowly disappear.
We felt less comrades;
More strangers brought together by the wind.
The snake, it seemed,
Was going to win.

Oh, yes, we felt fear,
Deep in our bones,
Like the cold of a bitter winter.
But, as one, our human chain remained,
And the cold of winter,
Like the fear itself,
Began to wane.

So, on the edge, we held.
Like a unit. Strong.
Unsure, but also unafraid to be wrong.
If the snake wants us,
We thought,
Let it come,
For though we fear,
We also shine.
And in the Precipice,
We become Divine.