Sarah Awad    © 2016 All Rights Reserved

Whitetail season…
            between one breath and the next
            a buck in the clearing

I’m halfway through another 26-hour flight, Grand Rapids to Bangkok. Narita this time, not Incheon but you’d have to be among the world’s hard-core airport cognoscenti to see any real difference. I enter the moving walkway with the usual crowd of exhausted foreigners— the women in the black burkas, the sikh all dressed in white, the trader with the $2500 suit and a Hermes briefcase on his way to the VIP lounge, a big tour group from China all wearing the same T-shirts, and trendy jetsetters lugging around overpriced American whiskey from the duty-free shops. Eventually I find my train to the transfer terminal. This time of night the platform is nearly empty—a couple of French students wearing walking shorts and hiking shoes and carrying big backpacks, a retired Navy veteran with his ball cap that reads USS Forrestal CV-59, a middle-aged Thai woman in a dark business suit, a Mormon kid headed for his mission in some backwater village, a handful of others. In 12 more hours, we’ll all be looking for our bags at a carousel at Suvarnabhumi.

Forty-eight hours ago in the woods just outside of Stanwood, I filled my first deer tag in 13 years.

I hate this trip.

            IBEX sends back more arcane data.

            On the combine’s windshield
            corn snow


Jeff Streeby
Copyright © 2016  

Jeff Streeby is a Pushcart Prize nominee and a nominee for Best of the Web. His haibun “El Paso: July” was selected by Robert Olen Butler for The Best Small Fictions 2015. His new collection, An Atlas of the Interior: Small Narratives and Lyrics, is forthcoming from Hyperborea Publishing in December 2016.

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