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A State of Wonder This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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It was almost 6:30 p.m. in Florida, the perfect hour for the sun’s date with dusk. I glanced to the left and fixed my eyes out the window. I was immediately drawn to the sunset. It radiated colors weary from a long day: deep maroon, devious red, scorching orange, and jealous mauve. The combination burned through the surface of my eyes. It was almost as if the sunset had aged and was slowly dying before it collapsed over the horizon. As we increased in speed and altitude, the sunset grew larger until it became so broad that I could no longer comprehend its length.

Sighing, I rested my head and faced the tranquility of the sunset. Every thought and concern had been alleviated by the view and added to the colors dancing on the crest of the newborn evening sky. My window was already masked by the overpowering blackness of night. The windows across the aisle were swiftly losing their light too.

We flew over cities, clusters of lights from houses, highways, and cars creating blobs of electricity. Transforming into larger figurines, the lights took the shape of deepsea fish, illuminated to attract prey. I could see the large creatures, bending and swaying as they passed in the darkness.

I was frightened when the window turned solid black and wondered why the fish has suddenly disappeared. Why were all the lights gone? I realized we were flying over the ocean.

I peered out the window, the frigid glass the only thing separating me from the height of the sky. I tried to find some reassurance from the night. The blackness forced me to squint, however my efforts were futile. Never had I felt such an overwhelming sense of misdirection. For the first time, I was oblivious to the course and speed we were traveling.

As my eyes adjusted to the new darkness, I began to recognize boats, faint white specks, floating within the abyss. The dividing line between the illuminated boats and the stars ceased to exist. Together they formed the night setting. No longer did I fear flying but instead felt satisfaction from the star-freckled sky. I was gliding through space.

Hour after hour I stared out the window. The setting was enough to keep my mind in a state of wonder. Only the faint twinkling green lights on the edge of the wing reminded me that I was, indeed, on a plane.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.





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