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Flying Lessons

This is another excerpt from the memoir I am currently writing, about growing up in Alaska (and partly in Europe and California) during the 70's and 80's. The book deals with the trauma of early sexual abuse and the resultant fractal lines between mental illness and imagination, religion and reality. Ultimately it is a story not only of survival, but humor and triumph in the midst of madness. 


The tiny Cessna bucked and swerved as the wind smacked it sideways. I liked the turbulence; it made me feel sleepy, like being rocked on a sailboat in middling seas. From where I was tucked into the tail section with my pillows and blankets, I could see, but not hear, my mother conferring with the pilot through their headsets. She had the controls, steadily nosing the little plane back down toward the runway, away from the wind now, so that the bucking smoothed out.

A few seconds later we touched down, roughly, the plane juddering sideways like a nervous pony. I bounced a little in my ne…

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