praise aviophobia / from 35,000 feet

...some turbulence will pull at the body from within...

Filmmaker Chad Howitt
Partner Cave Canem

praise aviophobia / from 35,000 feet

The vivid sunset, the sky’s venous blue

as it rages to orange, to arterial red—
I read faith there, some shared exploit of blood.
What of the mercurial circuitry
of the cityscape below? At night, from 35,000 feet
of sight, the viral light we cast seems
held against extinction. so who cares about

a little nervous circling of the runway
or the way some turbulence will pull at the body
from within and betray the smallness
of these hands gripping the armrest? I will bear
the heavenly soupiness of the clouds,
forgive the pilot’s jagged descent into it.

Praise aviophobia and my brutal desire
for contact, for skin again and every lover

I have caressed. This be the blessed
in-between, the holy fall from the flock,
from the union-whole . . .
until the touch to ground, when I resist my urge

to hug and kiss the stranger there beside me.


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“From 35,000 Feet / Praise Aviophobia,” a poem by Geffrey Davis. ©2012 Geffrey Davis. Used by permission. Collected in Revising the Storm (BOA Editions, 2014).