Once upon a time
(not as far as you’d believe),
they would have called me a monster---
A quarter of me here,
and the rest lost within Africa.
America the Technicality.
But griffe is short for Griffin,
like the mythical creature
in the texts of our ancestors.
His bald head and bird’s eye
could survey the peak of Mount Olympus
while his talons split the seas
for waves of Mediterranean fish.
His body sprinted faster
than any life of the Savanna,
his tail whipping behind him
ever flowing as the Nile.
And his great, magnificant wings
soared all over the world:
over the sands of Persia
and the snows of Himalaya
and yes, above the American fruited plains,
but he always soared back to the pyramids
to rest his feet on the arm of Ra.
The king of the beasts and air
reunited with the god of the Sun,
residing in the crown of the pharaohs.
The gold that courses through my blood,
the myth, living among men,
as I don my robe of stars and stripes.