Reading The Book of Disquiet at 35,000 Feet
The traveller is the journey. What we see is not what we see but who we are.
On this flight path there’s no time to claw back.
The soul takes on the burden of the body,
narrows to a dull ache.
Pessoa returns me to the ground,
guiding me down the Rua Dos Douradores,
a small man with moon sad eyes.
We contemplate a river of regrets,
the consolation of false memories,
his voice murmuring like a radio in an empty room,
while below me another liner drags a grey contrail
over a vast white plain.
Up here the sky is purged of oxygen,
portholes salted with grains of ice. Behind the blue,
the stars bide in their wrath.
Those suspended seconds
when the engines seem to falter
are where we float until the steady note
of disquiet resumes.
Like a puff of smoke, a small cloud,
we grow into the instant of our dissolve