fieldsThere is a cornfield down by the airport

where the private planes teeter in a wind

too weak to lift my hair.

It’s palnted in pleasing lines of geometry

the cross-hatches of an artist’s shading if seen from above

(where I have seen them from the back seat of a Cesna

though my mind was not full of an expansive wonder

but rather,

whether the flimsy door beside my six year-old son

was firmly closed and adequately latched

keeping him from toppling out and falling to the ground

to flatten the green spikes of late-summer corn.

Is it locked? I asked the pilot again and again.

You’re quite sure that it can’t fly open?

Below us, the patterns of abstract paintings–

Mondrian, Kandinsky, Klee.

Around us, other planes occupied by less anxious sightseers

who don’t believe they are holding themselves aloft

through sheer force of will.

There is a cornfield down by the tree farm

where we hastily select our Chrismas tree

because the wind is not a secret rustle

or a whispering breeze

but a dare

searching for a worthy competitor.

Our neighbor’s children slalom through the evergreens

then disappear inside the wall of corn

sepia now, and stiff with leaves cradling

ears like babies no one wanted.

My son gallops toward the place that swallowed them.

His whole body pivots–

whole, half, quarter, sliver

gone.