There was a woman in my graduate program who always related her stories and poetry back to three things…sex, drugs, and/or her horses. Because calling her “The Sex Lady” or “The Drug Lady” seemed impolite, many students within the graduate program deemed her “The Horse Lady”.
The Horse Lady, who actually resembled Patti Smith, loved telling shocking stories from her past that related to absolutely nothing we were discussing in class. But, my favorite rant from her was the one about geese. I was in the middle of reading my poem which contained a stanza about geese flying overhead when…
“Why the fuck are there so many poems about fall and geese? If I hear one more poem about fucking geese…”
I have to give the Horse Lady some credit; the poem was trite. Then and now, I have had a certain fascination with birds that migrate. How they know when to leave, when to stay, and where to stop along the way is amazing to me. The whole ordeal seems exhausting. However, watching the V’s of Canadian geese make their way across the sky with either a cold or warm breath at their backs is a comfort and reminds us that the seasons are changing. This symbol of the seasons might be overused among writers, but I cannot help myself.
Sorry, Horse Lady, here I go again…
I am amused by the Canadian geese of the Chicago suburbs. While their grey feathered brethren are exhaustively flying back and forth from north to south, south to north, and so on; these geese simply plop their overfed bellies onto the grass of boulevard medians. The “flocks” that hang out near my office don’t even hiss if people walk near them. Like old people hanging out on their lawns watching the most boring parade ever, they sit down near the curb and watch the cars drive by.
I try not to judge them though. After all, I am looking down at them from a flourescent lit cubicle with the hum of my electronic devices buzzing all around me.
My animal instincts are numbed just like the fucking geese.