Daneen Wardrop: Descending to the Airstrip

Descending to the airstrip on post, the Colonel flies the fighter low enough to rattle desktops in the school below,
 
signals to his daughter in the classroom.
 
She knows it’s hi, see you at home, spare ribs for dinner,
 
tilt of wings to clatter pencils and chalk, teacher trying to explain continents through it,
 
how land masses can swim away. Movement exults to blackness, loss to flash.
 
A room somewhere bristles with pointers that fillip maps with exacto boundaries.
 
The girl fingers chalk left in a tray and closes the fuzzy, dazed smell of it in her hand.
 
Hand forced with drift that can’t tell dread from velocity.



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