risk is getting off food stamps

      before you can afford to buy your own food.

risk is going to the bank with your business plan

       coil bound in your hands

risk is projections you tried your best to stay confident and conservative

     around, whose world breathes inside tomorrow, so who knows?

risk is putting down the deposit on the office space

     before you get the loan

risk is talking in court when you want to be reticent and thoughtful

      yet every spoken word helps, every forgotten word

     something you kick yourself for not saying aloud, later, smoking in the car.

risk is trying new types of work, all the time, when what you wanted was a boss,

     a lanyard, a mentor, a health insurance policy someone else plotted,

    none of which you got.

risk is writing a poem, when you are trying to brand yourself,

     heart on your French cuff, alive and awake,

      despite the cost.

risk is taking that case you give too much of a damn about, can’t lose,

      because even you will be numb,

      adrenaline seeping out through your heels

      under the Plaintiff’s table.

risk is going to be worth the feeling of fighting the stony wind 

      at every doorway. You pray it’s so.


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