When I’m Escaping, I Break Free

Vincent Versluis

I love flying
I love everything about it
Taking off
Feeling vulnerable and free
Escaping
I guess I always know in someway I’m going to be somewhere else
Somewhere that isn’t where I was
It doesn’t matter how long for
I’m escaping
I get a thrill when the seatbelt sign goes off
And you’re above the clouds
It’s not a thrill because I feel safe
It’s that the plane feels somewhat lighter
Humans relieved that they are slightly safe
I feel more relieved when the plane is shaking
When the seatbelt sign is flashing
I feel a rush
But I do love those clouds
They always remind me of Falcor
The Never Ending Story
That majestic flying dragon that existed in my childhood reality
That exists in my adulthood dreams
I think most clouds look like him
And I imagine myself flying
On his back
In a world that still exists to me
I still believe in those mythical creatures
I snap out of that daydream for a brief moment
I reach down to my bag tucked tightly between my boots
It was too big for the ‘under the seat’ allowance but with a smile and a slide I got away with it
I seem to always pack things that I never use
Books, crosswords, pencils
When I’m in the air
I just think
I order a red wine, and I think
And then hopefully I put those thoughts to print
Like I’m doing right now
My favourite part is when the outgoing passenger cards come out
I see the people that didn’t bring a pen scan the airplane awkwardly
I can hear their thoughts.. I can hear them thinking
“It was so simple, why didn’t I bring a pen?”
They nervously tap on the passenger beside and ask them if they can use their ink
I carry a felt tip pen everywhere I go
For times like this
I love being the person to pass the pen
I’m not sure why I get so much joy from it
Such a simple task
I enjoy it
I look back out into the clouds and back to the outgoing passenger card
When I come across the occupation section
I stop and think
What am I doing?
I have ten boxes of space to try and summarise what I do with my life
I look out the window and I’m back on Falcor in the clouds, his ears are flying back into my face but I don’t mind
I’m enjoying spitting out the fur and closing my eyes as the wind gets too hard and the speed gets too fast
I look back at my card
Occupation
In this moment I can be anything
I look at the piece of paper again
I have a pen in my hand and I’m writing
This is what I do
I may not be professionally paid for it
And it sure as hell doesn’t pay my bills
I can fit that title into these boxes
And it isn’t a lie
Because this is who I am
I’m a writer
I have a pen in my hand
I’m in the air
And I don’t want to land TC mark

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