The map’s outline of national identity, a sovereign state
whose divisions are won by the shout of votes or lies or
both. A geography of politics too – what the CIA book
of facts names Country, the indefinite article of its
indiscriminate belonging, if the locals are to be believed.
How it’s ‘Tis of Thee and countrée and the Holy See and
all the other derivations of history and all the other
accents of liberty: I say/you say/they say in this global
magic three. Hear it in this cadence and rhythm of that
rhyming, otherwise it will be the twang of another inflection
or in the haunt and lament of a midnight pedal steel, maybe
whippoorwill in those hillbilly lyrics of a different tagging.
Even in its etymology we cannot agree. On exit I hear a bird
cry, you hear song, and they hear a national anthem ring.