18 January 2006

Returning to Earth


Iron boned fingers clamped over the wing's leading-edge. Head sideways, cheek flat against the frozen flight surface. 90,000 Rolls-Royce horsepower propels three hundred and ninety tonnes of steel to the roof of the sky. Why can't I hear the engines? Sound is battered behind at ten miles per minute. Cracked brittle eyes detect smooth grey rivets. Headwind bludgeons my skull, trailing feet batter a horrific tattoo, shoes and toes are long gone. Backpack safety net in case.

A child's expressionless face appears in a porthole window. Five plump fingers wave slowly. Then I am gone, grip released streaking backwards in the jet's contrail. Yet still forwards Einstein-like, relatively speaking. Spinning and twisting, a human bullet slowing by degrees. Gravity's insistent tug is vaguely evident. Consciousness swims. Freefall death-defying escape. Right hand grips rip cord, more by luck than judgment. Final effort, sharp pull, violent upward yank.

One hundred shades of patchwork green revolving slowly below, gently spiralling landscape two miles down. Big lives await my return. I see sweet perspective from beneath this crackling canopy. No pain no remorse no anger. Altimeter eyes gauging safe descent. Specks become trees and dots become cars. Green handkerchiefs become fields and the blue ribbon is a stream. Ground rushing up now but England's earth conjures up a soft landing.

How did I get here from there?

8 comments:

NMAMFQLMSH said...

O.K. where'd you go and why didn't you come see me....wink wink. Nice post.
I see you,
JJ

Cocaine Jesus said...

'realitvely speaking'
he he.
brilliant.
always fancied myself as a pilot. less biggles more tom cruise but hey ho.

Perfect Virgo said...

JJ - ever feel like you've been wing-walking? Not to be recommended at forty thousand feet.

CJ - I can see you with the scarf standing out horizontally and crying "chocks away!"

Patry Francis said...

I left a comment here a few days ago, but it seems to have disappeared. Consider this a test run.

Perfect Virgo said...

Patry - I am so sorry your comment was lost in the ether. I had no notification so I wonder what became of it. Following this successful test I hope you can remember your words and re-post?

Jane said...

"Consciousness swims. Freefall death-defying escape. Right hand grips rip cord, more by luck than judgment. Final effort, sharp pull, violent upward yank."

:)I've decided to continue where i left off..

Perfect Virgo said...

Jane - life in the fast lane is just like gripping the wing tip of a speeding 747 at cruising altitude. One slip and you're off. Be sure your grip is secure Jane and take that parachute just in case ;)

Perfect Virgo said...

Jane - i re-read your comment several times and now I am reading it two different ways. My opening parachute you quoted could be safety net or familiar comfort, either way chin up girl, it's ace to see you back!