253. The Landing

I thank you for your patience.”

They could not believe their ears:
This was Odell?–
The little feeble-brained
Grease-monkey tinker?
Yes, it was–wires
Coiled from his pockets, tearing
Holes clear through his pants,
Just as before. Same
Tic touched his left eye.
But this Odell was taller–looked
Straight at them, as they’d
Never seen him do–
Spoke like he was Roosevelt,
Or something.
Nodding, he inspected
Their two rows.
“That’s fine.”

Above the whipping,
Fitful storm:
Ears playing tricks?
If this–a hum.
Hats tilted back.
Was it–
Dead overhead.
They craned their necks,
Eyes shaded.
Hum. An engine hum.
An engine whine–
Nothing in view.
They froze stiff, scared
To look at one another,
To be foolish,
Betray hope.

Vibrating hard
Against their ears,
Now higher. Lower.

It broke!
Down through the brown sky,
Into sight,
An arc, a slope–now
They could spy
Its tiny wheels!
Like some precocious
Christmas present, in a
Dream–it banked–
They pressed hands
To their ears.
Hats blown off,
Before this gale,
They crouched.

The plane touched ground.

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