Somedays I wake up and look into the mirror and ask myself if I am really human. I know that I speak. I know that I symbolize and wear the skin that has the blood of mammals pulsating through its veins. I know that I am not a fish or reptile. I do not have the stamina or tenacity of those fine creatures, and my jaws are thickly layered with enamel. I walk upright and the monkeys are still not doing it my way. But if I am honest, I am not always so sure how different I am. Even a chimp went to space. We got him there but he went there. It’s like we try to get away from who we are but end up carrying that person with us wherever we must go.

George Cassidy Payne is a poet from Rochester, NY. His work has been included in such publications as the Hazmat ReviewMoria Poetry JournalChronogram JournalAmpersand Literary ReviewThe Angle at St. John Fisher College, and 3:16 Journal. George’s blogs, essays and letters have appeared in USA TodayThe Wall Street JournalThe AtlanticHavana TimesSouth China Morning PostThe Buffalo News, and more. 

See all his poems on Tea House here.

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