Elevator down

Step inside.

Look at all the bored stressed-

out blank faces.

Launch into Gregorian chant.

Tell them you've never gotten over 

your fear of heights.

Ask if this elevator might

be hijacked.

Repeat Schnellzugzuschlag 

quickly ten times.

Ask how fast an elevator 
if the cable breaks.

Ask about the center
of the 

and might the elevator plunge
that far.

Offer to read your own 

personal elevator poems.

Ask if you'll see 

the bones of miners

on the way down.

Another poem of your

own, as many as it takes
to reach your floor.

Taylor Graham is a volunteer search-and-rescue dog handler in the Sierra Nevada. She’s included in the anthologies Villanelles (Everyman’s Library) and California Poetry: From the Gold Rush to the Present (Santa Clara University). Her book The Downstairs Dance Floor was awarded the Robert Phillips Poetry Chapbook Prize. Her latest book is What the Wind Says (Lummox Press, 2013), poems about living and working with her canine search partners over the past 40 years.