Angels’ Wings

Originally published November 2008 in the Dickinson County News

At the risk of quoting a mushy inspirational song, “I believe there are angels among us.”

I also believe there’s a bit of angel in each one of us.

The other day, I was doing an interview for a story, and I was reminded the following quote by Luciano De Crescenzo: “We are each of us one wing and we can only fly by embracing each other.”

I used to talk with friends about my theories of the dangers of tying two free birds together. “You tie them together and they’re trapped,” I’d say. “They were free alone. But now that they’ve got that tie holding them together, they’re only going to get themselves wrapped around some post and tangled up.”

That friend would always smile at me and reply: “Yes, Anitra, when they’re tied together, they’ll get tangled up. But when they CHOOSE to fly side by side, they’ll be OK.”

Eventually, I bought it. The analogies are different, I know. My birds were looking for freedom. But the one-winged angel isn’t fully equipped to fly without embracing another person – whether it be a friend, a family member or a loved one.

I’ve decided I like the angel analogy better. Maybe partly because I like the idea of admitting we are all somehow impaired when alone. Maybe because I like the idea of an inherent need to lean on one another. Maybe just because it’s a beautiful mental image illustrating the wonderful things we can accomplish together.

“We are all angels with one wing. It is only when we hold on to one another that we can fly.”

How true, I thought. So often, we flutter along with our high aspirations but can’t get our feet off the ground. We are not impaired by being tied to something or someone, but we gain the true ability to fly when we embrace someone else.

What a beautiful idea. Let’s fly.