Konch Magazine - The Two Friendly Geese by Tennessee Reed

Behind the South Berkeley Post Office
a dozen domestic geese,
used as guard animals,
wander around a large yard
A farm goose,
possibly a hybrid of European,
African and Asian descent
and an Embden goose,
whose ancestors are from the North Sea,
stretch their long necks upwards
as soon as they see me
They waddle in my direction
A white lattice fence separates us
The farm goose bends his neck towards me
and sniffs me with his black beak
He greets me with a loud honk
The Embden goose, who is all white
also honks a greeting at me
The farm goose poses for a picture
by turning his head to the left,
and showing me his neck,
which is a mixture of light brown and white
The Embden goose continues to stare at me
with beady black eyes, and it smells me
with an orange beak
As I leave, I turn around
and I notice they are watching me leave
As I get in the car, they are walking back
towards their group
Unlike the geese
we are goosed
They are content
while we are grousing
The geese unite
not caring about where they came from
We can learn from them,
or are we far from learning
from those who are lower than we,
the prize of the universe?
Yet our hiss takes the form
of nuclear war heads
and climate change
We ruffle our feathers
and do the goose step
against our enemies
over skin color, hair color, and eye color
height, and weight,
ethnicity, nationality, political
and religious beliefs,
land and property,
we determine our values upon
where people come from,
what they wear,
education and profession,
how much money they make,
how old someone is,
what type of music they listen to,
what type of food they eat
While geese tolerate each other,
regardless of their roots,
harmony among humans
is still a wild geese chase