Always Been a Lightweight
Left with a bowl, a book, the clothes
on my back. I carried confidence
in the good will of my fellow man. And woman.
It might have been unwarranted idealism
Walked my shoes through, and the next pair,
miles in service of the mildest breakthroughs.
I didn’t always know what to do. Unsure
which scale can weigh the wisdom
of those who chuck everything.
I lit out carefree, half-informed
but bound to find the best version
of each person, strangers on the path
as friends unmet yet. I left clean
and limber. Packed light, lit out,
been moving since then.
TODD MERCER won the Dyer-Ives Kent County Prize for Poetry in 2016, the National Writers Series Poetry Prize for 2016, and the Grand Rapids Festival of the Arts Flash Fiction Award for 2015. His digital chapbook, Life-wish Maintenance, appeared at Right Hand Pointing. Mercer's recent poetry and fiction appear in: Bartleby Snopes, Blast Furnace, Cheap Pop, Eunoia Review, The Fib Review, Flash Frontier Magazine, Fried Chicken and Coffee, In-flight Literary Magazine, The Lake, The Magnolia Review, Softblow Journal, Star 82 Review and Two Cities Review.