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About the Poem

This is a long poem that tells a story of a very short event in my life. The actual event didn't last more than a minute, yet it touched me very deeply and in many different directions. It's about hearing the sound of a crashing airplane and the emotions it stirs up within. The morning after this event occurred, it was on the news that hundreds of calls flooded the local airports complaining of low flying aircraft. All airports confirmed that no aircraft were in the area at that time.


One night I lay awake in dreaming
Of blue stars and all their gleaming,
Falling to earth or at least seeming
To fall far from the heavens above,
A sky left lifeless, less their love.

This vision deeply did I ponder,
Whence I felt my mind begin to wander;
As something faint and far off yonder
Seemed to call my soul away to explore
Deep emotions I'd never felt before.

Being brought forth with no resistance,
As if a song sung in the nearby distance,
The sound I reckoned within its own persistence;
A man-made eagle soaring in flight,
A steel saber piercing a silent night.

Clearly the engine, cute and cunning,
Of an airplane, sleek and stunning,
Flowing forth as if a river running,
Hypnotizing with its gentle hum,
Soothing my tensions, I was rendered numb.

There I lay, and lay I quite alone,
Except for a sound found easy to condone,
Parity finding both us monotone;
For someone else's profit begotten,
Surely to pass and be fast forgotten.

Now, softly sinking into my pillow,
My body weeping like a willow,
It came upon me like a billow;
This sound which long since should've passed
Was growing louder and louder quite fast.

I told myself it must be crashing,
Envisioning pictures of a previous thrashing,
When metallic bird and earth came clashing;
Leaving few and far a scattered remain
Of man or child, machine or plane.

My conscience needing some reassuring,
"No, that never happens" I said, conferring
To the sound whose song my mind was blurring.
Hoping it might come to cease or wither,
Cutting cold like a blade, it did neither.

There I lay, crestfallen, at the calling
Of a plane I clearly knew, now, was falling.
Every emotional ounce within me sprawling,
For I knew this noise would have no master
Other than the wicked hand of disaster.

I wondered who'd be victim, this rendition,
Who'd be a statistic of fate's decision,
All the while waiting on the collision.
I felt my body grasp a chill,
As this noise grew louder, and louder still.

And as this evil sound engaged me;
The mere thought of it enraged me,
That a simple noise had completely caged me
In such a state of fear and anxieties -
Yet they spread through me like disease.

When alas the one thought I was saving,
Cut me like a knife, engraving
Its claim unto my soul - enslaving
My mind and body, thoughts and will,
As this noise grew louder, and louder still.

My heart within my chest exploding,
My mind, subjected to this noise, eroding,
Heeding to a sound I saw as a foreboding,
Overran, and paralyzed - I
Winced my eyes, preparing to die.

Whence I beheld the heart within me aching,
But by no token mistaking
It for the pain this sound was raking
Throughout my body and soul at will -
As this noise grew louder, and louder still.

But my heart had come to mourn
A family whom this vile scorn
Would surely devastate come the morn;
When they find the son they washed out like a stain,
Not only lived but died in vain.

Reaching the pinochle of vanity,
Echoing the voices of humanity -
Slowly instilling sips of insanity;
As if to torture and yet not kill,
This noise grew louder, and louder still.

Underneath my skin this sound did wither,
Just like a snake this sound did slither.
"Stop!", I screamed, still came it hither,
Skating on blades across my brain,
Piece by piece, painting me insane.

With sweat down my forehead beading,
The very spirit within me bleeding -
This sound was not yet done impeding
My person, though pale and ill;
It just grew louder, and louder still.

To a point where deafness stopped objecting,
I looked back on my life, reflecting -
Scrutinizing and dissecting
Each meaningless moment 'til I was unbound
To such an ungodly, grating, ungraced sound.

Quite in question of the inflection
Of a sound still growing like infection.
I fell into a past reflection,
And my lips yielded a simple smile,
Surely not to find reconcile.

But the end of my life nearing,
Grasping a past moment, endearing -
For just a second I forgot my fearing;
Seeing soft green eyes of days gone by,
Feeling the warmth of a childhood lullaby.

But like every tender moment previous,
It played with my mind, somewhat mischievous.
Ran away, just to come back dark and devious -
For the only hands to ever hold me
Ripped me to pieces, vilely, coldly.

And still this noise not yet done screaming,
Cut through my visions and my dreaming,
But in no way distorted my deeming;
I lay ill and still, and somewhat thrilled,
The culminating quest nearly fulfilled.

With time's portals open, seeing life slipping
Like a leaky water faucet dripping,
And finding not a memory worth gripping;
I lay at ease through tormenting illness,
Taking deep breaths, waiting for stillness.


Suddenly silent came the night.
Wonder followed, robed in fright.
The torrid noise biding me fair-night,
After touching my worst hopes and fears,
In thirty seconds lasting thirty years.

And with silence laying its arms around me,
In the dampened darkness where it found me,
Breaking the sonic chains which bound me -
Like coming off an orgasmic high,
All emotion with that noise seemed to die.

The sudden calm shaking my soul like thunder,
Not knowing where I was I sat in wonder.
Had Death's angel had taken me under?
Beyond a world of grief and pain -
Beyond a world we pass in vain?

I searched and saw I only haze -
Slowly slipping into a gaze,
Curiosity still burning a blaze;
A glare of red came to my view,
In faint display - one, three, two.

Somewhat superstitiously befuddled
By numbers whose meaning my mind muddled,
This wicked puzzle I fiddled and fuddled.
Oh, would I ever come to know
What these insipid numerals were meant to show?

Breaking the darkness, 'coming more pure,
But bringing curiosity no cure.
A meaning not mine to endure.
They stared at me, now bright and bold,
As the air about grew suddenly cold.

The numbers were a sign I've come to find,
Coming complete with a state of mind -
To which most of humanity's blind;
Now I understand the one, three, two,
The chains of time that bind me and you.

It's one-thirty-two in the morning,
Reality ripping, raping, scorning.
The alarm clock digitally adorning
This evil, surely not real twist,
Which hath me handcuffed by the wrist.

Time taking its sweet time passing
A spectacle in heckling and harassing -
The feelings of impatience now amassing.
Taunted by the timely ticking, tocking
Of the grandfather clock pendulum in mocking.

My chest, an open grave, now hollow,
An eternal pit for my soul to wallow
In the hours, days, and years to follow;
Passing, one second at a time, by me -
Each, in my mind, an eternity.

The gods above, again, twisting fate,
Have chosen, once more, to obfuscate
My life. I know must reiterate -
The quest of the living, regret and sorrow,
That perplexing pathway towards tomorrow.

My life simply should've been taken,
I shouldn't have to consciously awaken
To this cold, cruel world, God-forsaken.
Oh where's that sound I've grown to love?
Were you vanquished by the skies above?

Oh take me now; don't leave me clinging
To the echoes in my head still ringing
Of your beautiful voice still singing.
Could you not have taken me with you?
Is that not what you were sent to do?

Oh won't you go just one pitch higher?
Won't you answer my inquire?
Won't you fulfill my desire?
Or are the hands of heaven really so cruel
That they would play me such a fool?

On my knees I begged and pleaded
To the sound which so aptly conceded
To the stately silence which impeded -
Rewriting the scrolls of history,
Just to plague one life with misery.

But the sound, never an answer showing,
Never reaped the crop it was sowing,
Left me lying, lonely, not knowing
What to do or think or feel,
Or even knowing if it was real.

But I made my way to my feet,
My body feeling battered and beat,
The fresh air tasting oh, so sweet;
As I slightly cracked the cobwebbed window
And the wind sang soft its innuendo.

Then, placing my palm to the tainted glass,
Staring at the sky, open and vast,
I saw a falling star, and just that fast -
I swore I heard echoes of laughter.
They laugh at me now, and ever after.
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© 1999 Michael Anderson Please respect the rights of the author and Passions in Poetry. If you would like to use this poem on your own web page, please contact the Author. Thank you.

3 Visitor Comments

I only have one thing to say: Wow.
I will never forget this poem. Have you ever thought of writng a novel? Thanks!
Your work is reminiscent of Edgar Allan Poe's early work. very well written, and truly touching. ty.

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