Photo by Tom Verdoot from Pexels

Plunge & Ascend

A Poem of Redemption

Laura Alice Hargiss
2 min readJan 20, 2021


On the edge of a precipice I stand
mountain ledge a forceful hand
Silence pressures,
deep breath before the plunge
it won’t enter my lungs

Gravity constantly forces her magic on me,
her sinews pushing sediment into the soles of my feet
Anvils, layer upon layer,
weigh heavy on my shoulders
stretched muscles tire and burn
I am afraid
to look down;
Will I make it or
will I drown
before I even reach new ground?

Feeling like I’m underwater
When I drop
will I sink into the stars
and plunge towards distant matter?

Searching, frantic,
my brittle nails scrape and rip,
seeking simple rim or narrow strip
to grasp, to hold
to frustrate hell for one more minute

But rock, like mud, simply carves away
gravel slides and ground gives way
and like the pebbles that tumble with me
I find my mind in disarray

Head over feet
Feet over head
Head over feet
Feet over head

This rhythmic descent
constructs a beat
to which regret sings refrain,
a lesson bittersweet:

When once content,
joy over pouring
turned dark and dreary
and tainted morning,
What sadness lies
in truth, that I
stubborn, ornery
did not look up
to Christ

He would have gathered
He would have consoled
He would have mended all broken fractions
of mind, of soul, of heart and bone
Yet I heeded not
and therefore suffered
painfully, mocking His Atonement

Now in sadness
defeated, descending,
falling farther, quickening pace
If I cry out
will I be
caught by grace
taught by grace?

If I listen, past fright or fear
my Savior’s voice comes ever near
reminding me that when I fall
it is not the end,
no, never at all

As falling is paramount
to learning how to stand
so must weak be made stalwart
by humbled, repentant hand

He, patient,
“It is better to look up
than to ponder, weary,
of dreadful depths below
for upward glances
avow compelling truths
of what your soul already knows.”

So, once I land and tighten laces
I’ll restart my ascent
always reaching, looking up
for heaven’s helping hand
I may trip or fall again along the way
but eager I’ll press on
dusting off as I go
’til I reach God’s blessed land

Mosiah 4:9 “Believe in God; believe that he is, and that he created all things, both in heaven and in earth; believe that he has all wisdom, and all power, both in heaven and in earth; believe that man doth not comprehend all the things which the Lord can comprehend.”