Angels are with us, said a woman seated beside me on a plane. I smiled politely and went back to my reading. People often claim not to believe in angels, she went on. What do you think is keeping us from falling from the sky? I shrugged, less of a smile this time, wondering if she might be insane. Outside our windows was a view of storm clouds. Our flight had become bumpy, shaking us about. Followed by shrieks and scattered debris as we plummeted toward our death – as if off a cliff – prior to recovering onto a lower level of air. My hands unclenched. Thank God we were caught. I looked at the woman next to me. She was smiling. We were caught, she repeated. By angels, I suppose. She gave me a sweet smile, pleased by my answer. The turbulence made it impossible to concentrate on my book, and so I shut it. All right, I said, attempting to engage in conversation to amuse her. You convinced me. I believe in angels. I looked up and found myself saying this to an empty seat. Across the aisle a man looked up from his magazine and regarded me suspiciously.
Excerpt from Light-Years in the Dark: StoryPoems (see more)