Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Google Maps

Flying from Lincoln
To Denver
To Phoenix
To Portland

I sat in a window seat
And watched the world go by

It looks nothing like Google maps.

I watched farm land
Rise to mountains
That fell into desert that bled
Into grey rainy weather

But I never saw a bright red line that indicated a state line
Or a small black one to show a county
Or a dotted line for a new time zone

I watched rivers snake across the land,
I watched straighter roads do the same
 At times I could see the vehicles
 Rush with the tide

But instead of division lines
I connected every city
Every town
Every farm house
With the roads that cut across the surface of this country
It would take time,
 But I could walk out my door and see anyone

I found it interesting how easy we are all connected with the things we make
 Airplane Seats
Yet, the person next to me has nothing to say
 Earbuds are in the way

From 40000 feet
This life doesn't look anything like
Google Maps.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

To the lady wearing two different shoes

6 in the morning
Portland Oregon
I'm sipping Pike Place coffee
 (with cream)
The city is waking up
The brick sidewalk is busy in front of the glass
Cars, busses, and parked taxis fill the narrow downtown streets
The pedestrians do that sideways glance
   wanting to see who is behind the glass
   but fearing real eye contact
There are all kinds of people walking past
    pants hanging low
    wobbly heels fighting with the bricks
    a grandpa, ear plugs, jogs by

Then a woman with an air of grace walks by
Black shawl wrapped around her, matching hat still shows some grey
She has a walker, but it might as well be an umbrella for the way she handles it
Then I notice her feet
Two completely different shoes
    left foot is an old beige nurse’s shoe (S.A.S still makes these)
    right foot is a denim flat with a silver buckle

I don't know her story
Is she among the homeless I’ve seen in the city
  camped out in doorways and underpasses
Maybe it is crazy shoe day at her granddaughter’s second grade class
   and she gets to come for lunch
Hell, just maybe, she likes to wear them that way

What I do know is that I saw you
   with your two different shoes
You inspired me to write this poem
(Which I know you may never read)

It is now 6:30 a.m.
In Portland, Oregon
And I am hoping I meet the woman with two different shoes in heaven