night flying


Night Flight
Mary Oliver
Traveling at thirty thousand feet, we see
How much of earth still lies in wilderness
Till terminals occur like miracles
To civilize the paralyzing dark

Buckled for landing to a tilting chair
I think: if miracle or accident
Should send us on across the upper air,
How many miles, or nights, or years to go
Before the mind, with its huge ego paling,
Before the heart, all expectation spent,
Should read the meaning of the scene below?

But now already the loved ones gather
Under the dome of welcome, as we glide
Over the final jutting mountainside,
Across the suburbs tangled in their lights,

And settled softly on the earth once more
Rise in the fierce assumption of our lives –
Discarding smoothly, as we disembark,
All thoughts that held us wiser for a moment
Up there alone, in the impartial dark.

Photo by Eva Darron on Unsplash

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