Air Born

Eric Chandler

Eric Chandler

a portajohn in Kyrgyzstan

one of my favorite pieces of graffiti:

Toodles, Afghanistan

 

our chartered airplane followed the great circle west

over territory I didn’t recognize

a long sweep of coastline

probably The Maritimes

the sun gleamed down

through the severe clear

 

over the St. Croix

between Maine and Canada

reversing waterfalls are nearby

one direction when the tide flows

and the other when it ebbs

I knew where I was then

 

over the White Mountains

tiny from the air and

vast in my memory

my Limmer boots walked over

forty-eight peaks

I saw my birthplace

 

I tapped my friend on the shoulder

in the seat in front of me

I pointed down

with a war hangover and said

I was born there

Littleton

 

we slid across the northern tier

over the Upper Peninsula

over the old runways

he pointed down

I was born there

Kincheloe

 

faces plastered to the window over the

places we appeared by accident

***

Eric “Shmo” Chandler is a husband and father who cross-country skis as fast as he can in Duluth, Minnesota. He flew 145 combat sorties in the F-16 during seven trips downrange. His work has appeared in Sleet Magazine, The Talking Stick, O-Dark-Thirty, Aqueous Magazine, Great Lakes Review, Grey Sparrow Journal, and Northern Wilds, to name a few. Visit ericchandler.wordpress.com to read his published fiction, non-fiction, books, and poetry.


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