At first sight

by Tim McBride

“As G force increases, the visual field constricts” -USAF Aviator’s Medical Manual


No Cupid’s bow, no darling buds of May, no weakening of the tendons

in my knees, no earth unsteadying, no trumpet blasts or violins,

no rainbows, parting clouds, or fireworks. Just raw gravity,

acceleration through a steep banked turn, aortic valve

crushed to a thread, the sky a gyre narrowing,

a stopped-down lens, all peripherals gone

black around the tightening circle into

which I flew, the unvanishing point

of light on which my eyes had

locked as if somehow

they knew the single

thing I had to

find was