China-cup chats

I’d thought about this once,

maybe through lakeside footsteps in dreams.

Maybe when stride met stride with yours

and we studied the smile of blue hours.

We grew fat with the memory of tabletop

teas over doilies and the speech of saints.

Would it have meant as much

to begin each sentence with as little

common understanding as possible?

Or are we just better at

straining China-cup wishes

through soundbyte chat,

writ large on Tupperware souls?

Whenever we were brave to upset our apple carts

at street-parties, temple gates, church halls, downstairs rooms,

full of happy smoke and sure-talk,

we made for ourselves cider from apples –

handshakes from hellos, initiatives from invitations.

In the dimness of the post-potluck hallway

we had the best things to say.

Things left until after we’d crystallized our consciences,

codified our spaces, tallied our victories,

counted the offering;

edited our truths –

things best left in the hands of friends.

Those without agendas, solutions, or any big ideas –


only names. 


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