No Planes Go. UpsideClown, 2017.

A short story for the UpsideClown collective, on post-Brexit aviation futures.

I was out on the patio yesterday morning when I suddenly remembered chemtrails. It seemed like the most surreal thing: not only a sky scratched with straight white lines, but to have lived in a time when we had both the engineering capacity to fill the air with metal whales, and enough dim-wittedness to not understand the concept of humidity and temperature differentials. Still, as the graffiti the next road over says, we have all now had quite enough of experts.

I live in south London under what used to be a major flight path in and out of City Airport. I never minded it: noise is noise, and standing out back watching the beasts flinging themselves ever upwards before banking at disturbingly steep angles always felt like a lovely free show. At least once a week, mostly early evenings with a stiff gin in hand, a plane would appear to tip a little too much and I would imagine that the pilot had overshot; that the whole enormous structure would keep on tipping and rolling, glinting in the evening light as it plunged down onto my paving stones in a tidal wave of flames.