Metaphor — Crumpling Glass
Trying for home—not sure where that is, but trapped in this airport is making me crazier than I know I already am. I lost my purse with everything in it—well, not lost exactly—it was picked up on the sly by a roving child, a tousle-haired grimy bastard with sticky fingers. Later, I saw a woman in an orange-flowered sundress with my wallet. I roared into her with carnivorous words, to no effect. Somehow, she now owned outright what had been mine—ours—my family's. My hands were tied. Still, I was going home, if I could make the departure gate appear and stand in one spot. Slippery little buggers, these gates—Star Wars portals, there one moment and gone the next. Gate 44 was just around the corner, or so said the ancient attendant with half a face made of green plastic. A blinking 44 in sight! My plane has closed its doors, but has been miraculously held for me. I need to slip through the barrier by holding my breath. But once in the lift, we shot downward to nothing. No plane—back to the terminal. After a period of blankness, I land in Atlanta. Met by my unnaturally young mum, overly stylish, gripping a large Burger King soft drink. Buy one, get one, she exults. I try to explain about the stolen money, but she can't think past her latest fashion find. We head to the car, and I'm out of the fuckin' airport. Mom drops me off at the family diner, where my dad has corralled himself indefinitely, losing money hand over fist. He knows about the purse incident; I see it in the lines of his face. Dad brings me a glass of Sprite, clear and clean and sparkling. As I lift the glass, we both watch it crumple in my hands.
Ginna Wilkerson says: I completed a Ph.D. in Creative Writing at University of Aberdeen this year, which happily coincides with the publication of my first poetry collection, Odd Remains. I was also pleased to receive a 2012 Poetry Kit Award for my poem "Dimensions." I currently teach writing at Ringling College of Art and Design.