He remembers times
When a few people would board a flight
Without a pass,
Their patience, their sense of daring
Rewarded. He wonders
If salvation might be like that,
A few souls let on board
In the event that some of the
Elect failed to show.
He does not fly at all these days
But remembers also
A weary cheerfulness,
Late at night, after a conference,
Changing in Memphis,
Young attendant smiles:
Open seating this flight.
Robert Demaree is the author of four book-length collections of poems, including Other Ladders, published in June 2017 by Beech River Books. His poems received first place in competitions sponsored by the Poetry Society of New Hampshire and the Burlington Writers Club, and have appeared in over 150 periodicals. A retired educator, he resides in Wolfeboro, N.H. and Burlington, N.C.