Sal is a flight attendant and a poet. She offers travellers drinks and cheese platters with the quiet dignity of someone who writes gentle haikus at altitude. She writes a poem about ‘Mr Whisky’ in business class with the kind eyes and the dimpled chin. She writes a poem about the dark haired girl sleeping over three seats with her red Explorer socks on. She writes poems about the smell of rubber on hot tarmac. She writes poems about the tenderness of honeymooners. Sal composes the poems in her head. She gives herself five rows to compose in and then keeps on repeating the complete poem for the length of the aisle. That’s how she does it. Sal’s poems waste no space, they squander no time. And when everyone’s been fed and had their second cup of tea, when the lights go down and we all huddle under those tiny blankets, Sal carefully squeezes her finished poems into the gaps in the overhead lockers.


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