Flight attendant life can be a lonely one. Or so they say.
I wrote this poem a couple years ago, processing my feelings about life on the road. Of the loneliness my peers talked about that I couldn’t seem to feel. Except…
Except for the times when I slowed my pace, sat in place, long enough to sit and write. Long enough to feel. And it turned out, to my surprise, it was more complicated than I thought.
I realize this is a different kind of thing for this blog, but I’ve been weaving in the personal since the beginning, and lately more than ever. So here goes, I hope you like it.
It gets lonely on the road.
Or so they say.
Far away from loved ones, if you’ve got loved ones at all.
Stopping by, passing through.
Mornings in new cities where no one knows your name,
is waking up beside you,
cares if you’re alive.
But the bite they talk about is hard for me to feel
when I’m out with all my new friends,
running ‘round the town.
Exploring new places,
new faces I’ve found.
I’ve kept myself busy,
no down time, lacking sleep.
As if the moving hands and deadlines
bring me closer to my goals.
As if the notebooks full of notes
and the pages full of words,
the unfinished novels started,
and the songs left unsung,
and the miles yet un-run,
are getting closer, louder, finished, perfect,
I hole up in my busy and I zipper up my jacket—
the one that’s made of iron, meant to keep the feelings out.
And I gallivant and laugh,
and I sit, stuck in my social.
And I’ve dabbled in some strangers,
never letting them too close, though.
I’ve filled my bed with lovers,
my head with information,
to quiet down the doubts.
To keep the lonely out.
I’ve never felt the feeling,
but, oh it don’t seem pleasant.
Waiting on somebody.
But how long could you wait?
The ties and bonds and shackles,
routines and rituals.
Someone told you that was normal?
Because everybody does it?
Because who would want to be alone?
Who would want to shift through life like air shifts through the trees?
Who would want to sail so far to face the roughest seas?
Who would want to struggle more?
It’s hard sometimes, you know.
Giving just enough to get your fix,
being careful with yourself.
Creating new relationships,
‘cause maintenance is harder.
Sitting on the surface
‘cause you’re scared of deep, dark water.
Remaining cool and calm while your insides wind like watch parts.
What would stress fix anyway?
Anxiety’s for losers.
You know that worry doesn’t help,
say “Fuck it all” and help yourself.
Even if you’re not.
Even if you’re lying.
Even if it’s hard,
and you’re not really trying.
If you just want more deep, dark vulnerability, then consider reading these posts:
I’m Comin’ Out (It’s not what you think.)
And if you’re interested in learning more about Flight Attendant Life, then check out some of these posts: