Reaction to Skyscraper

It figures that just about the time I decided to update this blog once a week, I find out that I’m going to need eye surgery today. I may still be able to update next week, but just in case, here’s a poem I’ve been working on a for a while. The desire to write it reared up every time I would listen to John Barrowman’s version of Skyscraper, but I could never get it past a list of random ideas and feelings.

Although I wouldn’t recommend surprise surgery as a writing tool, I guess the news helped my muse find some coherence. Like I’m Made of Paper finally came together this morning. It’s not perfect yet, but at least it’s saying what I want to say. I’d appreciate any comments and constructive criticism. I’d also recommend listening to the song first if you haven’t heard it (any version will do: here’s Demi Lavato’s).

Like I’m Made of Paper

There was a time
the connotation was arrogance,
a head among the clouds,
trying to upstage God.
Terror has rewritten our dictionary.

When did running from the clouds
become cowardice? When did weeping
become weakness? Has anyone ever seen
the sky in tears? When released, does our pain
water the grass, too?

Broken windows tear into callused feet like paper slivers,
even crumpled currency retains mint value.
Someday, someone will understand why small men
feel the need for crisp newspapers.
Powerful words can live on a tattered page.

Tradesmen and clergymen used to yell
“Scrape the sky all you want, you’ll only get
dust under your fingernails.”
But we have turned it into stardust,
and used it in our coffee.