“Trust Fall” by Paul Watsky

Paul Watsky


There is no scientific evidence … the game builds any trust among participants.

This exercise must be vol-
untary. It’s impermissible to trust-

fall somebody else, like God
did Job—shoved him arsy-

versy onto a shit
pile then garnished the poor

sap with boils. Not,
we hope, Yahweh’s signature

moment, and not to be repeated
alone at home with your baby

sister, as in, Don’t
trustfall little Trudi without strict

parental oversight. No
defenestrations either! It’s

different to meet up with cooperative
adult friends and trust fall each

other sequentially, standing
straight, feet on floor, arms

crossed over chest, then top-
pling backward (deep

breath) onto ex-
pectant sup-

port. Aaah! (sigh) How
reassuring, one’s universe. Let’s

do it again, higher, stage-
dive the pulsating cosmos. Soon

we’ll be ready to trust that
gravity will relent, and human

nature. Old age retreats
beyond recall as we trust-

fall into harmonious
white light.

from Rattle #44, Summer 2014


Paul Watsky: “From age 15 to 30 I wrote poetry because I imagined it gave me social status—yeah, really—and it became part of my identity as a college English teacher. After the job went away, traumatically, I wrote hardly any poems during the years I rebranded myself as a Jungian analyst. But in my late forties I resumed, with more consistent effort and focus, having realized it’s something I must do simply in order to feel OK.”

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