Close your eyes and stand by the cornstalks.
Listen to the wind tickle tiger lilies and Queen Anne’s lace on the creek bank.
Hear it hiss across the top of the red maple, whistle through barn rafters, spin and squeak the windmill.
Smell the hard-packed earth, the burn pile in the backyard, the acres of grass drying in the late July sun.
Listen for the tractor buzzing in the neighbor’s field.
Now, listen to the silence: a few birds chattering, an owl, nights so completely dark and quiet you can hear the constellations murmur, “You are home.”
Open your eyes to find stone and steel.
See it climbing, desperate to peer over another’s shoulder; the prairie windows of Frank Lloyd Wright staring down Louis Sullivan and I.M. Pei.
Watch the mismatched eyes of stoplights winking on the corner and the slow blink of the Monroe Harbor beacon.
See skyscraper lights parse the passage of time: Christmas red, St. Paddy green, July 4 blue.
Smell the rain damp pavement and the dumpsters and the old urine of dogs and man.
Spy on Technicolor pictures that glow and pulse in apartment windows.
Hear the symphony of the elevated train – wheels clattering and brakes squealing two stories up – reminding you, “This is home.”
**This is a revision of a year-old poem.