Corey Mesler


In the 1940s my father
piloted planes into
the European Theater
dropping troops
like dandelion spores.
The worse thing he saw
was those troops
being shot out of the air.
And another time
a shell came through
his co-pilot’s seat
moments after he
vacated it. My father didn’t
talk about the war much.
He answered questions
but never brought the
subject up. His reticence
seemed humble then
and it seems humble to me
now. Ten years ago
he died of a heart attack
leaving his children behind
in territory both foreign
and familiar. We fight for
him now, our pilot, the un-
assuming man who talk us
how to walk the
world, the common world.



Corey is the author of Talk: A Novel in Dialogue (2002), We Are Billion-Year-Old Carbon (2006), Some Identity Problems (2008), Listen: 29 Short Conversations (2009), The Ballad of the Two Tom Mores (2010), Following Richard Brautigan (2010), Gardner Remembers (2011), Before the Great Troubling (2011), Notes toward the Story and Other Stories (2011) and I’ll Give You Something to Cry About (2011).