At the airfield

have always liked the openness of airfields. As a child you were claustrophobic. But you looked at airfields and thought, Whoosh.
You thought, Much better. Now most space is open space. Most things have been knocked down and you can see almost forever in every direction. From the control tower you watch for enemies or birds or any thicket of fast-moving things. No one is sure whether enemies even exist but you try to imagine how your throat would drop, how your lungs would flutter if you saw one. You would know if you saw one, if you were in danger. Otherwise it wouldn’t be fair. The openness of your fear condenses around you like thick rain. You are blind in your tower. Enemies are marching toward you across the aftermath of the hayfield. The tower is rumbling like thunder, is crumbling into the open space that once filled your body with air. Your breath is a thicket. Your hair is melting wire. You can’t hear yourself over the enemies’ laughter, the clang of their greaves. Maybe they have lances. Maybe they have rifles. For now their weapon is speed and they move freely across the airfield and cannot be seen.

Claire Wahmanholm
03 17 16