Carry On

A crescent of liquid maroon pools under the curve of her nail. A crack penetrates the electric blue sheen, cutting directly across the middle. The flesh throbs, blanketed under a sticky tan band aid. Her face is pink like a summer’s kiss, and her black pants hug the creases behind her knees. Her stomach is an ocean that rolls with the sudden lift and dip of the plane. That forgetting feeling crashes like a tsunami, and she casts furtive gazes across the aisle. Buckled in and trapped by yellow-red lights, she can only wait to double check. But the growing pit in her gut tells her she really doesn’t have to.

The white numbers count down her remaining time, and her thoughts chase each other. The repercussions of the forgotten item mount, and she wants to scream until her throat is raw and salt pours down her cheeks. Barely keeping it together, and of course she fucking forgets this. Of all things. She hates her flying self.

She swipes her finger across the small black screen just to hear the tap of her nail against plastic. She’s yelling in her mind, willing those stupid white numbers to wind down on fast forward. She doesn’t know what she will say when she lands.

This is a leaving that has a return that feels all out of place. This was unscheduled, but oh so needed, and God she could throttle herself for being so absent-minded. That’s the curse of yet another flight; what else is there to do but think and reflect? And reflect and reflect and reflect until it’s a softer salt sliding down her cheeks.

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