From the air

this continent is a jigsaw puzzle,
full of shapes and patterns –
perfect squares of farmland
and alien crop circles.

And from space
the cities are cathedrals of light –
points of navigation to guide us
when the road is hidden in darkness.

Up here, no one questions
your patriotism, your beliefs,
who you have chosen to love –
those are earthbound concerns.

Get up, off the ground, take wing
or you’ll never see the whole –
the patchwork nation we truly are
held together by invisible string.

A quilt is only as sturdy as the fabric
and the seamster’s precise fingers –
the needle pulled high and taut
before plunging back into layers.

Don’t be afraid to prick your finger
and always prick up your ears
when others try to define your freedom –
my darlings, there will always be blood.

Written on the occasion of the 17th annual Blended Heritage celebration at the Fayette County Public Library. The theme of this year's event was Patchwork Nation.


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