I feel like a philosopher every time I fly, or at least a poet. Words like superfluous and parsimonious become entangled in the clouds and whisper to me through my 40-cent airplane headphones.

“Excuse the turbulence” the airhostess spits into the speakers, overhead her words crumble with my mini pretzels next to the salted peanuts. Monitors around me displaying The Cosby Show and Icelandic indie debuts stubbornly invade my peripherals as I eye the stoic wings announcing their presence to the barren sky.

Just me and these strangers ascended 1000s of feet above grounded and I find it impossible not to ask what our existence means in all this.

As little as I may feel amidst this aerial view, I feel my iron lungs push their way through my chest, making room for more life and that feels anything but small or mundane. How is it possible that one day they will sink into stillness like the rest of these sleeping passengers. That the love of my life, him and his teasing glances are numbered like these limited crammed rows 19,18,17…

I begin to feel an overwhelming sense of homesickness filter past my thin recycled blanket. I can’t wait to escape these pretending heavens and breath our faulty air, to race my tired legs around my love’s waist, to tell my mother her smile is all but wooden to me.

Before I get too lost in my urgent to-do list I am interrupted by the stewardess who’s lips and voice match in matte, “Ma’am will that be with or without ice?” I pause and decide I can’t live another moment without. I don’t hesitate, “Ice please, endless amounts..”

Featured Art Courtesy of: Beth Hoeckel

Published by Katie Bak