Walking to the pond at the park
I never learned the names of wildlife, or perhaps I never listened.
It feels so late in life now.
I google the name of the bird that is looking at me.
The black bird with red on its wing is called
the Red-winged Black Bird.
This has given me confidence in naming the rest.
Under the droopy hair tree, I see:
Green tidy spikes fencing the ugly poof tops and skinny yellow necks.
I pass my hand across the fresh water corn dogs
and pink beaded pinkies, but pull it back near the angry stick bush.
Here, the red necklace.
No, this one I know.
The bleeding heart.
I feel its warning.
I hear the buzz come through the water,
like a great mouth
surfacing to swallow me whole.
CORY HENNIGES lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin where his body drives a forklift while his mind travels. His previous work can be found in process revisions and machine operating instructions throughout factories in Wisconsin.