So, it’s United flight #1551 from Newark to Portland, Oregon, flying west at 25,000 feet; and we’re heading in south of the Columbia; and I’m in the window seat on the left, row 31. Just before we approach the Mount Hood forest I look down and spot the three grain elevators and the long roof of the Dufur school and, yes, that might even be my little house with its green metal roof just across the street from the school; and I say to myself, Penelope, why are you sitting in this plane which will soon be landing at PDX when you’d much rather be right down there in Dufur? So, I dematerialize through the glass and reassemble myself and glide gently down over wheat fields, tilting my arms to steer. I don’t care that I have abandoned my carry-on under the seat in row 31 because everything I need is already down in the little house with the green roof; and I think there’s even a strawberry yogurt left in the icebox; and we all know that yogurt stays good long past its printed expiration date.
Penelope Scambly Schott is a past recipient of the Oregon Book Award for Poetry. Her most recent books are HOUSE OF THE CARDAMOM SEED and NOVEMBER QUILT