How I Am
By Jason Shinder
When I talk to my friends I pretend I am standing on the wings
of a flying plane. I cannot be trusted to tell them how I am.
Or if I am falling to earth weighing less
than a dozen roses. Sometimes I dream they have broken up
with their lovers and are carrying food to my house.
When I open the mailbox I hear their voices
like the long upward-winding curve of a train whistle
passing through the tall grasses and ferns
after the train has passed. I never get ahead of their shadows.
I embrace them in front of moving cars. I keep them away
from my miseries because to say I am miserable is to say I am like them.
We are home after a final stop in Pittsburgh at the zoo, which we have not visited in seven years, during our first Penguin Tour of the Northeast. It was delightful for several reasons: it's a great zoo, we got to spend a few hours with Betty and her daughter, the weather was as gorgeous as the rest of the week has been, and there were lots of baby animals at the zoo:
We ate lunch at the zoo, which was closing early for a fundraiser so it's just as well we couldn't stay late. Then we made good time driving home (younger son could not drive in Pennsylvania on a learner's permit but he did most of the driving in Maryland), and now we are busy with unpacking and laundry and all the usual post-travel chaos. Our cats are glad we're back to fill their dishes!