Only We Can Pull
by Allyson Jeffredo


There are moments when beauties come into being—the unbelievably small feet of a new born in your now grown hand, a salmon sky painted with cross-stitched contrails over a background of storm clouds—always or often where imbalance touches the border of another imbalance. Found: balance: a puzzle piece hanging off the table still grasping the edge of another.


We: I wouldn’t want to be anything simpler than us in this room pretending we are the room, holding ourselves. We are the sun beams mistook for transparent. We are the dust we will one day map ourselves in. The dust we promise to rebuild ourselves with. If we don’t find one another, we’ve been swept under a rug or immersed in a tree.


We: hidden between beings.


We, an elemental configuration. You’re the two electrons I need to stable my unstable shells or thoughts or tendency to overindulge.


Life: a chess match praying to stalemate.


No matter how hard I try, something’s always amiss—when I’m alone in a hospital waiting room or driving for hours. Can I find us? I disconnect from the busy lobby, the people in the cars next to me. In these moments, i don’t look at any of them. All of a sudden my We has been split like a beer bottle elbowed off a ledge. I’m so disappointed by the waste—the distance between myself & you & us & them & the beer on the floor.


We need to sew ourselves together like a daisy reclaiming her wilted petals from the sunburnt lawn.


Life: a shore calling at noon for the evening tide.


All my I’s long to be set free in a meadow with other grazing I’s.


Where is We? We: a tangled dream. Have left an impression bouncing off the edges. Yet refuse to step up and announce us at the door. Lost? Perhaps, We is nowhere farther than an unturned granite stone. Waiting for a midnight kiss before the race home. Can we find ourself? A rope tries to bring us neighbors together, but the length is always a bit too short. Even though we’re standing together, i can’t make out who you are anymore.


Someone, collect the scattered I’s in their fall,
chase them home.


In the bathroom stall: i + you = ∞


Life: a moment of death, but at least we have each other.


We want our bodies to dissolve. Our selves brought back with the fluidity. We’ll feel light again like a newborn baby in our arms. The baby knowing only lightness until she finally crawls. Where she feels the weight of her body as she struggles to maintain her balance shifting between lightness and gravity—balanced on her right foot, right hand on the couch, her left foot swinging back and forth until her foot finds the strength, the precise muscles to make the step. If not, she falls: into our arms, onto the carpet, into the couch. Until one day, she’s all balance. Her left foot finds the carpet, her right foot finds the carpet, repeat, and neither hand holds the couch. That’s all we really want: our bodies to feel balance, our minds always conscious of gravity and we either know how to fall or let those worried hands catch us when we don’t.


Published in Cider Press Review, Volume 18, Issue 5.

allyson-jeffredo_sqAllyson Jeffredo is a fellow of The Loft Spoken Word Immersion Fellowship, which allows her to teach creative writing and the arts to Elementary School students of San Bernardino. When she’s not writing, one might find her out in the woods playing airsoft.

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