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Aug 2010
You're hurtling down the runway and you're scared.
Taking off, 45 degrees above horizontal
until you can't hear anything but
the rumbling thunder of the engine and
the hissing air of the cabin.

One glance out the window
and your eyes widen in shock at the entirely new world.
A city of spun wool and wispy cotton candy,
piled snow and gigantic foamy marshmallows,
solid white mountains and hills of soft fluff.

You want to jump on them,
roll around and off their feathered slopes,
Pet, stroke them,
lie with them forever and tell them all of your secrets
because they are your best friends.

Be careful, though.
For clouds are a mean and sneaky illusion,
and the very second you touch them,
they'll melt into nothing,
break apart in your fingertips.

You will fall thousands of feet back to Earth with
your heart in your mouth,
a silent scream caught in your lungs.
Dazed, dying, you'll look up,
no longer able to see the world of your dreams.

With your last breath, you can only watch
the clouds laugh and wave a careless good-bye
as the transparent drifters move on,
blowing away faster than smoke,
off to catch the next unsuspecting dreamer.
Janet Li
Written by
Janet Li  charleston
     ---, D Conors and Emma Liang
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