of mountains and men | 16

More from Chris Jansen:

5000 ledge

Clothes jerk and flutter
The wind cuts our bodies
Eyes gaunt
Force the elation
Just tired

Cold lava pierce fingers
Numb feet feel for toe holds
Noses drip freezing pearls
Irritated in the wipe

The rope tight
Hurry with care
Swallow the view
Inhale the exposure

Sheer drop down in breathless beauty
Our bodies struggle for comfort
Sleeping bags glued to the ledge.

(Comment: I have not been able to get hold of Chris, but I presume this poem reflects our bivvy at 5000m on Mt Kenya a few years ago. Good writing mate!)

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