Green Hills Literary Lantern

The Word




The Ferris wheel, after

furnishing a grand ride,

stops with you at the top

and starts to let riders off 

(drop/stop/swing a bit)

seat by numbered silver

seat and you try to savor

each remaining vista

(I can still see the car wash!

I can still see Kelly’s farm!),

your allegiance true to heights

each step of the fated way down,

you rocking your seat as much

as you dare while you still have

the chance until it’s nearly your

turn and you start to feel the pull

of the big, warm earth and hear

the indifferent gears of the Ferris

wheel and, reorienting, notice

how the process of getting off

is undertaken: then the thin,

nicked metal bar gets swung

open by a slightly scary carney

and you step out and plant your

feet on the wooden ramp, then,

steps later, on the solid crust of

home ground, the familiar place

the ride, it seems, only just began

and though you’re only 7 years old

the whole circular event feels like

some weird premonition

except you don’t know that word

yet so don’t know what it was you

just felt; what it was just happened.


A graduate of the New England Conservatory of Music, Mark Belair is a drummer based in New York City. His poems are forthcoming in Fulcrum and Mudfish, and have appeared in Slipstream and Wisconsin Review as well as GHLL.