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.