Florida Spanish MossWaking up in a Villa in southern Florida

after all night listening to the sandhill cranes

out over the marsh

making noises, (birdcall from the 7th Dimension)

their Spring mating,

I wake up and I walk

through homogenized vacation homes

all stucco, all shades of baked earth,

the people, like the homes all look

the same– various shades of pale

playing tennis, playing golf, swimming in pools,

jogging, walking in the morning heat

and as I walk, perfectly fitting in,

I hear the cranes still crying out their song, also I hear

the mourning doves and the distant throb of automobiles

on the freeway. Looking beyond the homogenous houses,

there is marshland, wetlands, ponds and lakes

surrounded by willow, salt bush and brier,

reeds growing as fast as the sun can pull them from the ground

and lily pads out on the water. These are the places

that I’m drawn to the wild places. The

places in which I am native as alligator or sandhill crane, and yet

I have an immense appreciation

for my ability to move

safely, invisibly

through this world,

through these people.

in this strictly defined space

of sidewalk, a neutral zone

where I feel safe safely contained,

where I understand

That I will not overflow

The boundaries of what

everyone believes to be possible.

**This poem is raw and unedited. Someday, maybe I will come back and do that. For now, please don’t claim it as your own. Copyright laws apply

March, 2016. Written by: Bettina Essert

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