and, all and everything
 
i learned the exercise 
in school, how to
compare and contrast.
such as: how is the 
desert different than the
mountains? how is the
blue jay similar to the 
robin?
 
different, similar
how? why?
 
thirty years later 
i continue to live within 
compare and contrast. 
am i different than you? 
am i similar? how? why?
 
an endless dance– 
step one, step two
different, similar
how? why?
why? how? 
my mind spins circles 
until i fall into something
else:
 
the word between
compare and contrast–
the word
 
and.
 
there it stands 
a bridge between
 
black and white
here and there
you and me.
 
and, all and  
everything.
together,
let us pause
let us listen.