Citizen: an interpretation of a work


A clerical start
A studious ending
Bookends to a life
In pursuit of answers

As questions burgeoned

Why does Claudia Rankine’s work
Haunt me?

I cannot capture the bookends
Of these lives she paints

Citizen: an American Lyric

To exist in the wrong place at the wrong time?

I do not know
Will never claim to know

But that I am haunted
By the feeling that
Have been there

In some way in some time

Have we all?

I didn’t sense a claim to universality, in fact a specificity
Colored the work.

Nevertheless, I would humbly wonder

We all get the starts and the ends; be they
Studious, clerical, or none of the above.

It’s just the middle. Such diverse differences amongst us.

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