there is a certain liminality to airplanes
even the ones now fixed to the ground,
all museum tours and rot held at bay,
for a while.
yearning for the strain of metal,
a voice calling out safety procedures
(don't tamper with or disable the smoke detector in the lavatory),
and someone who loves them to come back to brush
knowing hands, since gone to claws, over their instrument panels.
in the air there doesn't seem to be a good reason
for planes not to tilt,
tilt down inexorably,
till they kiss the earth again.
all crumpled aluminum and fire
and a small black box
to tell those we left on land
some of how it happened.
I can tell myself about physics and engineering,
about this being my second flight today,
and about how (if nothing else) I made it onto this plane.
the turbulence pays me no mind.
touching down, touching ground, it hesitates.
there's a ghost of movement still.
a waiting. a breath.
the rush of air and engines,
not gone so much as paused,
halted only for a moment.
I am a little afraid of flying
but I'm more afraid of moving on
moving past this moment,
all muscled grace and limbo,
a portion of earth held up in sky.
then we land and walk to baggage claim
while behind us the airplane-
the airplane holds.
version 3ish. Probably done editing.