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Airport Widower
by
John Grey


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The five o’clock plane to Charlotte is
one long sleek airbus suctioned to its chilly entranceway.
Men load suitcases on a moving ramp.
People sit in silence, sipping coffee, reading newspapers,
or hunched over laptops.
Everyone here is on a business trip.
No hugs, no quick excited honeymoon kisses.
Faces are as blank as brand new spreadsheets.
 
But your face is like the scattered posters of holiday places.
I won’t see you again they say
until it’s summer out, the waves are rolling up the sand,
and a pretty young girl is bouncing a beach-ball.
 
The woman at the airline counter
is boarding the first class passengers,
the families with small children.
We economy-class riffraff
absent-mindedly fondle our boarding passes.
It’s time for mutual subjugation.
 
Soon we’re airborne
and your face is like the clouds puffy white
outside the window.
Or it’s the forest below.
Or the checkerboard farmland.
Whatever I can’t reach out and touch
has your eyes, your nose, your mouth.
And soon enough we’ll land in a place
where nothing is you.
 
At Charlotte, we’re greeted by strangers
holding up signs with names of arrivals.
None of them say, “It’s me. I love you.”
At best, a car awaits to take me to the office
At worst, it’ll get me there.
 
© by John Gray.
Used with the author’s permission.
Purchase a framed print of this poem.

John Grey was born in Australia and works as a financial systems analyst. Recently published in Poem, Caveat Lector, Prism International and the horror anthology, What Fears Become, he collects early comic book issues of Mad Magazine and the works of horror writer Algernon Blackwood. John lives in Johnston, Rhode Island.


Post New Comment:
erinsnana:
This poem is great...and so romantic!
Posted 02/03/2013 12:55 PM
KevinArnold:
Ahh, the techniques of the very best fiction and even journalism conjured into a poem through careful craft, a lyric ear, and a touching through-story of love. Great work.
Posted 02/03/2013 09:04 AM
Donna Pflueger:
John, a beautiful and powerful poem. I'm sure it will mean many things to many people but for sure, it touched me at this time in my life. Thank you.
Posted 02/03/2013 08:45 AM
Wilda Morris:
"We economy-class riffraff absent-mindedly fondle our boarding passes. It’s time for mutual subjugation." . . . "Whatever I can’t reach out and touch has your eyes, your nose, your mouth." Those are my favorite lines in this poem! Well said!
Posted 02/03/2013 05:39 AM


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