Terminal C, Gate 23

Feet perched on top of a practical duffell, those few inches of distance

Between my feet and the carpet allow space for impractical wishes.

Wishes that I weren’t here, waiting.

In Terminal C, Gate 23.

I’ll land in Hanoi, where I intend to find hidden layers of myself

To learn from the trees and the temples, “uncovering a deeper me amidst the differences.”

...I can’t remember where I read that,

Or whether I really believed in such shallow metamorphoses.

That the blossoms of foreign lands could pass near me

And change my genetic makeup on their way,

A passive process with a lifelong glow.

That a planned adventure could open a soul

And widen eyes to deeper truths,

A scheduled struggle with an intimate victory.


The sun of early summer sets behind a Boeing fleet

With one of those glows that make it easy to wonder

Why I would ever leave.

From a layer of honey spread thin above the horizon

Out into a whirl of candied cotton, soft pinks rushing up to softer blues,

With a tumult of purple messily stitching their wisps together.


I hear a crackle and the sound of $500 offered to a gracious volunteer:

A passenger who will relinquish a seat.

I feel my calf muscles strain until I place the sound at Gate 24.

Could I reschedule my flight too? For a decade or two from now?

I’ll be wiser, my ego a shadow of its current state.

I’ll return after a controlled, but active transformation.

I’m through leaving growth to forced stretches

Hoping that an induced fight or flight will force me to soar.

Measured steps into fear will surely pull further than these sputtered leaps.

This poem is about: 
Our world



Wrote a similar poem for a creative writing class, made minor edits for the Glow-Up, Grow Up Scholarship Slam.

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