Plain as Red

You’re a kid and
your mom shows you
a photo, “One of these
things is not like the
other,” she sings. Then
she asks you to 
find the odd one
out. You stare at
the photo, an aerial view
of hundreds of people
all carrying umbrellas. You
look for a while, searching
for something that stands out
but also questioning why difference
equals oddity and why any of
it matters. And then you see
one red umbrella amidst hundreds
of black umbrellas. You see the way
it is unlike the rest; you see the
difference and the oddity, but you 
still do not know why it matters.

You’re twenty-three and
you look at your life. You 
examine it the same way your
child self did that photo, searching
for something that stands out
something that is different –
an oddity. You examine your life
and you see it as plainly as you did
in that photo;
you are the red umbrella
now.

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