Phew, I'm crawling back out of the woodwork for this killer prompt. Maybe it's because I've felt disconnected from my local writing community recently and have been doing a lot of rock climbing, but I couldn't help myself.
This is what it's like to climb into the storm:
Tilt against the rock, a crucifix
shod in rubber. Ignore the thunder—
uncertainty is why you came. Open
your mouth when you breathe.
The rhododendron and pine will be
gone tomorrow; taste them
on the rain today. At the top,
hook the metal back
to your waist. Leave the wall clean.
Leave your hands raw. Leave your feet
bare when they return to Earth. The sand
is soft in Muir Valley, and the snakes
don’t bother with cloudy weather.
This is what it's like to toss fear,
wet, across the ground where it will
run in rivulets with mud and melting
clay. Spill it from chest and gut.
Trade it for laughter. Grin with
bright teeth that know what it's like
to fight gravity.