Lightning Bolts and Bullseyes

My paper planes were decorated

at the front with lightning bolts

with bullseyes on the wings

and windows on the sides filled

with giddy passengers

dreamers taking flight

in the hands

of schizophrenic winds


in the middle, hidden, always

my name and a message

for the boy who might find it where it lands

in Mozambique

for the girl who rescues it from a tree

in Japan, in Peru

in Timbuktu


I stood on a pillar

and perfectly

timed my throw

into the biggest bellow

the first

of ten thousand crash landings


dusk brought my mother’s call

and, one last throw

with aching legs, I climbed up on the pillar and


with casual indifference

with a creaking arm

I laid my battered paper plane onto the laughing wind


I know you won’t believe me but

the plane got tangled

in the gusts

was sucked

into the sky

above the waking streetlights


I teetered on my toes

and, with tired and squinting eyes

I watched it disappear



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