I’ve been watching videos of teenage Russian boys

climbing ladders to the tops of radio towers, 

doing chin-ups and flips on railings of skyscrapers, 

dangling off cranes by only fingertips as if the world 

below them was completely absent: Buddha’s meditation 

inside his nothingness. Through the camera lens 

mounted to their heads: visible cities, the dots of people 

and muffled buzz of automobiles return to their cement-

steel colonies. The street grids below create order 

as the people age closer to their destination. 

These boys don’t wear gloves, don’t chalk up 

their palms while Death’s waiting to swallow them 

if they slip. When I lean over my apartment balcony 

I want to jump. This is called High Place Phenomenon

confusion and fear, a cognitive dissonance, 

an internal cue of plunging off the edge signals the brain 

to back away from the danger. But these boys blinking 

on the screen eat clouds—would climb to heaven 

if it existed, only to climb out of it, and out of that.