Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Phone Calls From Airports

My vision focused on the solitary memory burned into my brain. It was a memory of a phone call I never got from someone I loved from an airport. Looking back at things I've never missed a flight. God nor Amelia Earhardt never told me why. Anytime I go to an airport I arrive early so I can kill lots of time, drinking coffee and watching people walking around and dream like so many highway reflectors.

Maybe I like airports because they never sleep. The people in them now are the children of the people you used to see at bus stations and train platforms before they flew off to the stars. You see lovers saying goodbye like in a story book.

You can't get a phone call while you are in an airport, unless you have a cell phone. But you can call your answering machine, or your voice mail from an airport. If you hear your own voice it may remind you that you are the most important person in the world to ever get a phone call from a person you love from an airport.

Actually who shives a git? It's just a voice from an airport. Cathedrals to the absence of the earthbound soul. Sanctuaries surrounded by wings trying vainly to comfort the terminal among us, and who among us is not terminal?

The voice I had wanted to call me, couldn't call me because I was in a jungle somewhere. She did call her mother, not from an airport, or a train platform or a bus depot, but from a pay phone in Clarendon, Texas. She told her mother she was fine and would be home in about an hour. As she pulled onto Highjway 287 South a semi truck driver ran a signal ight and flattened the young girl and her cherry red Mustang convertible.

We live together in my dreams and I have clung to my dreams like June bugs clinging to a summer screen, or like messages missed on an answering machine.

Before I had left for that Jungle she had wanted me to protect her from bad animals that attacked her in her childhood nightmares.

"What kind of animals? I asked.

"Bad animals." she replied.

I have lived forty years longer than she ever did and I never have figured out what the bad animals were. Maybe they were not animals after all, I couldn't even protect her from the semi on Highway 287.

I have figured out in those forty years, that if all goes according to plan, that someday it would all be alright.

Afterall, we are fortunate enough that all airports are connected to the same sky.


  1. dang! these type of tales always make me want to cry.... because I know the truth behind them. {hugs}

  2. Man Wes....You have got a great gift in your ability to tell stories. I'll never be half the writer you are.