Right of Way…

Our paths converged
amid the smell of morning coffee
eggs over done and a freshly mopped floor
the universe overlaid our tracks
to intercept
betwixt a wall and the buttress
of a fast food both
by summary calculation
length width and depth
my ambulatory appendages
could not occupy the same space
as her 4
two of metal ‘neath a supporting frame
two of flesh, now elderly
moving not at a gait, but at a shuffle
the world around her moves so fast
now that the years
have drawn her limbs down heavy
so I
I stepped aside
for her
my fingers laced
into the small of my back
and that is when this one small act
lit a flame within her face
and the smile that spread
from one corner of her eyes to the other
was the bursting of a radiant dawn
and as she moved along
I came to wonder in my heart
how my courtesy could generate such a smile
then it occurred to me
by my summation of her age
a presumptuous calculation in my head
I would take to my grave
before discussing with anyone
perhaps she came from a time
where men believed
to step aside for her was beneath their dignity
that each and every part of her
was subclass to they
who wore suits and sat with coffee and cigarette
in executive rooms
never once to consider
the sum of her parts was more than enough
to step aside for
hands of a warrior
no doubt having held the heart of her charges
in sickness and in health
eyes of a protector
that kept late night vigils
for tiny babes that slumbered
or for familiar headlights in the driveway
legs that carried her
thousands of miles
and perhaps a few more
to keep loved ones within her reach
her heart, beating fury and fire
maybe wild like the wind
stealing cigarettes to smoke by the pool
in high-waisted shorts and victory rolls
on a sunday afternoon
a placid marble sculpture
amid the rage of a hurricane
maybe she was a stone fortress
during the chaos of life
for someone
someone’s love and life
someone’s matriarch
someone’s queen
whoever she was
she is the lady who approached
the same space
I did
at 9am
in McDonalds
on July 11th, 2018
an elderly lady
moving along at her own pace
with her walker
and a huge smile on her face
as I stood aside to let her pass
and when she finally passed me
she nodded and spoke softly
“Thank you”
to which I nodded my head and answered
“Yes, Ma’am.”

About Eric

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s