Catawba College - Our Purpose, Your Promise

If Death is a Form of Aviation

I wonder why
a stumbling stutter of bricks
is called a flight of stairs.
Knees create fixed angles,
folding in to form a more
aerodynamic approach
or hook onto the runged tower of driftwood,
left over right
into Jacob's patchwork dreamscape.

You will find that the descent is
that the air shudders your breath
like a paper fan
flitting out fear from the ribs of
a silk bird.

In the space station
the men freefall
in perpetual float,
hugging the womb-walls in a
metallic grapple for the liver's orbit.
Their fingers stretch
without force,
momentum brushing past the place
where neither man nor machine
can touch the hand of God.

- Lauren Alston Smith