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Lana Lowe

Lana is an undergraduate student majoring in English at Cumberland University. She has published one children’s book and two YA novels. Her essay, “Fort Nashborough,” was selected for Volunteer State Community College’s 2022-2023 edition of Best Essays. Lana loves to write, read, and paint. You can follow her @WritingEclipses on nearly all social media and her artwork can be found under #LLoweArts on Instagram.

The Time I Flew

My Dad worked atop a hill that loomed over another hill.

“Mommy, I was so worried for you.”

Five-year-old me didn’t understand the concept of death, not really. Mom says she tried
to stop the car. She clung onto the back and waited for her superhuman strength to kick in.
I used to roll down that hill. Long summer days I’d spend with Dad at work. He had a little
portable TV, grainy and unreliable, that sometimes I could find cartoons on. If I was bored there
was an endless amount of pens, paper, rubber bands, and paperclips. Sometimes I’d make art
using the scanner on the copy machine. I’d pile rubber bands or pens on there and watch it spew
out new creations. One time I pressed my face to it.

I’d broken my arm that day. A clean break. I wowed the doctors by not crying. I was a
big girl after all. Daddy was going to sign my cast.

That hill seemed to go on and on. One could tumble down and never reach the bottom.
Daddy’s hill led to another, much steeper hill. A small line of trees stood between them.
That day the car flew. I’d never flown down the hill that fast. Where green melted into blue as
sky became ground. We whirled like the teacup ride at the fair. I didn’t like that ride; it made me
sick. I’d like to say that I had some epiphany. That my short life had flickered like the grainy
images of Daddy’s TV. But I didn’t really know. Not enough to even be scared.

Mom flew through the air when the car hugged one of the trees that stretched between
Dad’s hill and the next. She was told later, that she barely missed a tree stump that would’ve
killed her. She didn’t notice. She laid there for only a few seconds before she was crawling
through the driver’s door because my side of the car was still hugging the tree. I still had
my seatbelt on, of course. Mom had told me to keep it on. I patted her cheek and told her how
worried I was for her. Not for myself. No, I was fine.

It’s been over twenty-five years now. The trees have all been cut down. Dad is dead.
There are new people who work there. Maybe they bring their children with them to work.
Sometimes I think of those hills and those trees.

Maybe, now, we’d fly higher.


One light out of 86 flickers
Like it’s trying to tell me a secret
Words echo around
I count the lights
The windows
31, if you include the stained glass
That reflects on the speaker
The chandelier has one light out
Two of the light covers don’t match
14 people sit in front of me
Tapping feet
Leaning in to whisper