Justin Skolnick lives and works in Portland.


Originally posted to justin.revision8.com on in Barrington, Illinois

Just beyond my desk at work commercial jets descending to O’Hare fly so close that on clear days even my myopic glazzies discern the insignia on each tailfin.

If the space were flattened, at my parents’ house north of Woodstock, airplanes would be no bigger than flies through my fingers’ measure. In Barrington, at work, maybe they are like horseflies. A few miles down the highway, in Des Plaines, I recall seeing them almost hover, there the size of large birds, like vultures, or the blackbirds coasting in pantomime. On the interstate, both here on 90 and on 218 north of Cedar Falls, they pass just a few yards overhead, it seems.

Then, sometimes, the machines appear alarmingly close, as chaotic and unreal as when turkeys pecked at the windows of my dormitory. Shortly I remember the flightpath to the airport.