“Moment of Inertia” by Debra Spencer

“Moment of Inertia” by Debra Spencer

Moment of Inertia

It’s what makes the pancake hold still

while you slip the spatula under it

so fast it doesn’t move, my father said

standing by the stove.

 

All motion stopped when he died.

With his last breath the earth

lurched to a halt and hung still on its axis,

the atoms in the air

coming to rest within their molecules,

and in that moment

something slid beneath me

so fast I couldn’t move.

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