Two airplanes

I guess this plane is going down the hard way. 
It’s funny (in its way) — I thought I’d be falling 
into hysterics at the end. Instead I’m startlingly
at peace, an armistice I must have agreed to
or don’t feel like fighting against.

Grandpa was half my age when his plane 
went down over a Germany taken over 
by hysterics and a mad man. Imagine — 
18 years old and a prisoner for 9 months. 
He said he was reborn over there — 
Jesus himself had delivered him 
from angry mobs (recently bombed Christians  
throwing rocks) Into the less murderous hands 
of soldiers with swastikas and rifles. 
He was blessed, he said, saved; and my Dad 
came 8 years later, a blessing certainly 
to my plans for birth. Am I doubly blessed then? 
Or triple? The math of existence is beyond me. 

Grandpa came back without his teeth 
but always wore a smile. In that damn box 
his smile was gone, along with his color. 
His was the first dead body I ever saw. I wonder 
how many people he killed? He never said 
and I never asked. He lived 74 years and every day 
after he got home was a blessing. 
He never got on another damn airplane. 

And this plane? Encountered some turbulence but
I’ll live to squander another day, cynically 
smiling with incredulity as my peace is broken
by another savory rain that refuses to appreciate
the saccharine blessings flying in the face of history.


Phillip Knight Scott | © 2019

Submitted to the dVerse Poets Pub.

I joke a lot, but my Grandfather really was a hero. I am grateful to have inherited his middle name, if nothing else.

My name is Phillip. I live in North Carolina with my wife of 11 years and 3-year-old son, and at least for the next year, I’m on the right side of 40. (Both the interstate and existence, in years). I am a Tar Heel born and bred, and watch every Yankees game I can. My goal is to visit all 30 MLB stadiums in the next 10 years. I’ve been to 5 so far! Obviously I enjoy writing, but I also enjoy watching and reading sci-fi. I’m slowly attempting to finish my first novel, a “humorous” sci-fi romp which may be finished one day. I am a Doctor Who obsessive and choose Star Trek over Star Wars.

22 thoughts on “Two airplanes

  1. “Flying in the face of history” is a good way to measure present turbulence. The opening setup was a little wrought — too much sense of going down, not enough radar to the reader that the going is fraught but not imperiled. (Though who isn’t scared shirtless in turbulence?) Seque to the grandfather’s tale and its unfoldment was well done.. My dad worked the morgue at Great Lakes Naval Hospital after WWII, putting the wrap on burn victims from ships ablaze. Never sailed as far aa I know.

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  2. This is a wonderful read, chock full of amazing history……….every day WOULD be a blessing after all he went through. And I have felt that suspension of nerves during a terrible crash – it was like time slowed and I was suspended, just watching it happen. A sort of resignation takes over. Or something.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sounds like he lived an amazing life. I think of some of the things the people in that generation went through and count myself lucky for their bravery and sacrifices.

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