At The Ledge

At The Ledge

A Poem by Jeff Bresee

Each time before when I had fallen, landing in the pit below,

I found upon the ground were words that I could gather up to build

a latticework of scaffolding to climb upon so I could go

back to the surface with the crowd, but every time I found that still


I’d stay close to the ledge not knowing why I didn’t walk away.

I told myself it wasn’t wise. I asked, “why don’t you ever learn?”

It seemed t’was in my blood forever, an unexplained desire to stay,

a search for reasons I could finally give up once again and turn


to take that foolish step and plunge myself back in the pit of pain

where I would sip it down as liquor, custom stilled to quench the thirst.

It had become the only way I knew to feel something again,

a custom-made handcrafted sculpture of what was to me the worst.


But somewhere in that dreaded cycle, midst the chore of gathering words,

I found some until then passed over. No, t’was not at all by chance.

I knew they were those long ago while in my youth I’d onetime heard,

but I had never chose to use them. They seemed foolish at a glance.


They were to me the words of fable, used to herd the crowd above.

But in my hour of desperation there was nothing else to do,

and so I started sifting through them til I found the word of “love”,

then stood there staring at it until I had fully thought it through.


This was the word I had avoided. Felt it was so overused.

It seemed to mingle every single poem and book and tale and song.

But in that moment standing there I realized I’d been confused,

that everything I had associated it with had been wrong.


For in the pile I’d found it in were other words I’d also passed

over and I must admit, I done so all the while in fear.

Won’t ever understand it but, I finally opened up and asked

God to help me, then I stood in silence wondering if he’d hear.


But I was soon distracted for I watched the words, before my eyes,

move out from the pile where one by one they all aligned themselves

into the most poetic prose, so as I read it made me cry

and when I wiped the tears away, I looked around and found myself


atop a mountain, high above the land below, no longer near

the pit of pain. I stood there for a long time taking in the view,

and as I did the message that the words formed became very clear.

The word of “love” stood boldly in my mind and I knew what to do.


The years have now passed on ere since that time I finally changed my ways.

Would like to say I’ve never since come close unto the pit of pain,

but I admit, I still go there to celebrate my darkest days,

and when I’m there I stand close to the edge to look back down again.


But now each time I stand there I no longer feel the way I did.

Not there to fall, but rather simply view it from the ledge above.

I guess I like the feeling I get when I walk away instead...

knowing that it’s possible because I finally learned of love.

© 2020 Jeff Bresee

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Added on January 13, 2020
Last Updated on January 13, 2020
Tags: moving on, personnal victory


Jeff Bresee
Jeff Bresee

Dallas, TX

I love to write poetry and then turn it into songs. I am a singer/songwriter for Weathered Pages, a Fort Worth, Texas based music charity. Check us out at And I hope you .. more..