Home > Poetry > Mid-Flight
profile/robert-lietz.md
Published: Fri Oct 15 1976
Art: Paul TheriaultEver New (detail), 2022, acrylic and found paper on scavenged wood
Mid-Flight

I see the new-born, the scalded.
A birthmark of friction
covers its whole flesh.
The pilot says we will set down safely.
A matter of minutes.

But it’s more than minutes really,
It’s the glass-blower’s
instant of Yes,
the two-nosed birth you believe in
until alarums wake you.

I am reading.
My legs crossed like a woman’s.
I hear my blood course.
I listen to my breath,
its rites and repetitions.

I am comfortable with the obsolescence in me,
the rivet that pulls from the wing
and sends me crashing,

I have made it to mid-flight,
my instructor plummeting in free-fall,
and I see myself,
I am thrilled and disheveled,
my appearance like that

of an immaculate house
where a woman is sleeping:
The strip gleams where I touch down,
ground dentures and bridal settings,
the house stands up around me.

See what's inside AGNI 5 and 6

Robert Lietz has had poems in the Seneca ReviewRapport, Yes, and South Carolina Review. He also has a chapbook from Cellar Press entitled Side Booths. (1975)

Back to top