• HOW Blog

The Survivors - Henry E Crawford

Minutes after liftoff

as the houses below

were disappearing


the landing gear fell off


the engines exploded

and the floor gave way


a salesman with a laptop

belted to his seat


followed me down


families of three and four

falling together with seat trays


and carry on bags


and we were buzzing the cityscape

like wingless dragonflies


strapped into cushions


scattered and speeding to the ground

in multiple pathways


like neutrino souls

indifferent to the feel of matter


penetrating the roofs of malls and stores

hitting the ground and slicing through

the surface of the earth



descending through layers of clay and crust

and molten core


our clocks going backwards

north and south collapsing in sheets


we were the dead and the dead spun round

but pulled up now


to the world of the sun again


through lanes of underground surfaces

opening up to light the way


I glimpsed a boy still in his freckles

“We’re almost there sir, looks like we’re going

to make it”


and bathed in the halo of light gravity

that is always with us


I found myself standing still


up on top with two feet

before a stand of poplar trees bristling


in the shine we share not with the gods

but with the ground


breathing in the moist aroma of midday soil

on the other side of the world.

 

Henry Crawford is the author of two poetry collections, American Software (CW Books 2017) and The Binary Planet (The Word Works 2020. His poem The Fruits of Famine, won first prize in the 2019 World Food Poetry Competition. His work has appeared in the Southern Humanities Review, Boulevard, Rattle, and others. He is a co-host of the popular poetry series Café Muse, presented by The Work Works press.

50 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All