what if

Once, there was a boy in a tower
who fell for the moon.
He loved it as little boys were wont
to, obsessively.

While his father studied the birds’ flight,
he traced the night for her entrance,
lanky arms stretched through bars to
cup her wispy image in his palms.

How many nights did he spend
watching her move to the roar of the sea
and his father’s snoring?
Stretched across the black expanse,

a multitude of stars marked the distance
between them, a roadmap
he could not follow
except with haunted eyes.

So when he found himself on the edge,
waxen wings strapped to his back,
everything else was secondary;
his father’s words: superfluous.

Beneath the sun’s shade,
a familiar silver curve beckoned.
He dipped, belly skimming the sea,
before launching into a sharp ascent -

the sun’s proximity be damned!
The viscous liquid slipping down his shoulder blades
was only sweat. Right?
(Other things he ignored:

that he was chasing a spectre,
that the looming sea was always
an ominous presence.)
He was so close -

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