Our plane has already been de-iced
but sleet comes over the wings again like a coating of dust
on the wide leaves of a rubber plant—
leaves I vaguely remember seeing, somewhere,

pancake-thick crudely outlined leaves, a canoon version of
something I saw in an overlong childhood afternoon
when the promised transparent vision failed to arrive.

Well, tower has told us we 're on indefinite hold—
looks like we'll be here for a while

an elemental distension, like melting watches
out of date the minute they appeared,
like the torpor my parents warned me of, though what would
   they know
of Tahiti and syphilis and tropical rot?

More static-crackle.

Folks, we need to get de-iced again
when they can get to us.

                                Well, it will be too late.