POEM: What We Recognize

What We Recognize

There’s a red-tailed hawk on the wires above the Monro Muffler. Or maybe it’s a falcon. I don’t know for sure. I like to think I can identify more birds than I can. Like most people here in the land of asphalt and promises, I know more corporate logos than I do birds or trees. Show me the Golden Arches or the Swoosh and I’m your man. Ask me to identify the leaves that gather like asylum seekers against our door and I’ll have to admit I know as little about them as I do the people I used in this metaphor. I believe in building small communities, but I don’t even know the names of most of my neighbors. I’ve hugged the guy who brings our Chinese food but his name escapes me. Same for all those dear friends I had on Facebook. Now I see them on the street and they’re like pop songs whose lyrics I never quite understood. Hum a few bars, but quietly. The hawk is skittish.

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Jason Crane
25 November 2018
State College PA

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