BY ROGER PAO
Emblazoned with the texture of winter, I step upon
morning snow, my footfall ablaze with tenderness upon the ground. If desire took the shape of a crane, I could
be the love that gave her flight. I could carry her silvery
torso over blizzards, through smog-laden cities,
to her mate upon another continent, to a nest with two eggs.
My boots snuggle close to the coast of Massachusetts Avenue. The sidewalk marches with me. The road ahead
is barely visible. I hear the muscular engines of snow plows, witness their marigold torsos
salt the asphalt – no rush hour and little traffic.
Two schoolchildren race down the sidewalk
parallel to mine, in front of a pregnant woman who gazes at them half-watchfully. Suddenly, I am full
of longing for flight. I miss my family, my home,
everyone and everywhere I left behind. Let me tell you
I am a crane, full of longing for your heart.