The Human Body Falls at a Rate of 32 Feet per Second

by Ariana D. Den Bleyker 

I’ve seen bits of you in the bright blue
exosphere, listened with my imperfect flesh,
raw, throated tongue. Listen: I say ricochet,
channeling the girl with her hand on the gun.
Because I’m feeling gravity’s pull or rather
fighting it. Because I can’t relax. That
I’ve learned we’re not pure biology or physics,
not the rate at which the human body falls.
There’s no future in an imploded star, in ice
rising to renew itself by fire. That I’d never
believed something so heavy could float, never
understood how orbiting could mean falling
forever. Listen: I say surface, broken, tension.
That I’d never dreamed we’d become broken
symmetry, that I’d grow taciturn, fragile,
tongue-tied, my back aching without the stability
of your spine, my bones holding memories
untouched by your hands. Asymmetry is the new
god of physics. Remember, I too am a second;
blink and you’ll miss me.








Ariana D. Den Bleyker is a Pittsburgh native currently residing in Upstate New York, a wife, mother of two, a writer and an editor. When she’s not editing or writing, she’s spending time with her family and every once in a while sleeps. She is the author of several poetry chapbooks and collections, most recently Wayward Lines (RAWaRT Press, 2015) and Strangest Sea (Porkbelly Press, 2015). Ariana is the Founder and Publisher of ELJ Publications, LLC, a small press specializing in the author, featuring Amethyst Arsenic, Emerge Literary Journal, scissors & spackle and other fine journals. She can be found at


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