In the morning’s heat, sharing
Coffee and catch-up,
Long since last seen, a dear friend.
Soon to confess he didn’t know
How to act
Or what to say . . .
He stammered to grasp sympathetic words,
Multiplied his fluster and progressing pink cheeks—
All adding to his honest dilemma.
To the rescue flashed
My usual ready-to-smile grin-y grin,
A hug and hello quick break-in.
One not from confidence,
But he wouldn’t know that.
Only I feeling the crumble inside
Realize that it—my smile—seems not so
Forthcoming, and faithful,
But more hesitant, flawed somehow.
Depending, of course,
On what I may ask of myself.
And today, I wanted to genuinely
Overshadow any beneath-the-surface
Moldy mind decay.
His discomfort, foremost and first,
So that I might answer his tender inquiry,
“How are you?”
My warm reassurance reached for his fingertips . . .
Across the table, we held hands.
Looking at him, eye to empathetic eye—
I know. I feel his tenderness.
It is difficult to ignore—
But stop. Please stop.
I’m fine, I am. I know I am.
“Just great. I’m good,” lifting my voice a lilt for him,
Assured, adding in cavalier-fashion,
“Thanks for asking.”
We chitted. We chatted. This and that.
Easy as it had always been.
We like one another,
Friend to friend.
As I speculate into the unknown—
What did he really think?
And deducing . . . perhaps not mine to know.
‘Cause . . . if I ask him,
Does he feel he can be truthful?
Second coffee drained, and me, too.
Certainly—time to go.
It’s all good, our hug told me so.
We’ll see each other again, sooner.
For time is of the essence
And true friends