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Thirteen Seconds 2010

Janet Kuypers
(poetry converted to prose)

    A woman from my town jumped from a bridg. There was a creek nearby ten feet wide, two feet deep. And... And I didn’t know her, but we thought about it, her jumping to her death. And we calculated: at the height she jumped from, at her speed while she was falling, it took her thirteen seconds to fall to her death.
    Thirteen seconds.
    She thought for thirteen seconds before she died.
    And the thing is, she might fall through the nearby tree branches, and we thought about that... the silver maple trees might hold her back, slow her down. Well, she hit those trees, and they didn’t save her... So this is what I think of. Those thirteen seconds, give or take.
    That’s what I think of.




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Chicago poet Janet Kuypers
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