Flight of the soul

Dear Readers: In light of my recent near miss on a Southwest flight to San Diego, I’m publishing a poem I wrote several years ago

southwest takeoffmy flight lumbers down the runway
a drunken gooney bird
straining for liftoff
then soars into the morning sky
like an eagle
destination San Diego

flight plan prescribed
set altitude
longitude and latitude
predetermined
veering neither left nor right

each passenger
on a mission
mundane or sublime
but all set within earth’s bounds
a friend to visit
a funeral to attend
an elderly mother to care for
a business deal to seal

but what if this is not flight 1765 to
San Diego
what if this is an outbound flight
for my soul

I asked myself on rising this morning
my heart craving what it cannot have
can I discard my habitual moaning
my bitter tears
can I forego my usual recriminations
can I truly head in a new direction

clouds33-with-aircraftturbines surge
riveted metal shudders
as the plane breaks free of
earth’s gravity
ascends through a gray drizzle
into blinding sunshine above
a sea of white peaked meringue

suddenly a wing dips
our course is altered
anticipation and fear collide in my gut

the captain’s voice echoes in my ears
and mine alone
unfasten your seat belt Karen
feel free to move about in life
rise above your usual attitudes
oxygen masks have been removed
seat cushions no longer float
no safety instructions
no lights to direct you to the nearest exit
no soothing libations
nothing to take the edge off your fear

no exitin fact
there is no exit

leave your baggage behind
no carrying-on allowed
leave that suitcase packed with hair shirts and
sexy lingerie behind
fretting and yearning are prohibited

forget the flight tracker
you don’t need to know your destination,
nor your arrival time
all you need is you

phoenix_soul_by_clintonkun-d3clpipam I ready for this journey into the
heart of me
ready to stop regretting what I lack
open to finding
what I’ve not known about myself
not to uncover a smarter or wiser me
just a hidden me
one seen with non-judgmental eye
explored with gentle steps that
tread lightly on tender places

maybe this world needs a me
who is just me
not a better me
only the created me

plane rainjarred back to the present
thudding onto the runway
the captain announces our arrival
light drizzle
temperature sixty-five degrees

I know this is not my journey’s end
but its beginning
this journey of my soul will begin
with each breath in
end with each breath out
transport me to places
beyond my meager imagination

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