Some days I fiddle,
looking again for the white paper ticket,
some days I’m merely going through motions,
knowing I won’t find it,
some days I direct with purpose,
I rub it between my fingers like a lucky coin,
knowing I’ll see it again later,
Some days that ticket is a symbol,
of how collected or uncollected I am inside.
On occasion I feel as solid as the very parking garage,
whose narrow paths I wind up, up, up forever,
like a mouse in search of Swiss cheese.
When I leave his office,
his quiet presence, affirming smile, his heavy silver pen scratching perhaps innocuously….
tender words nestle in,
Sometimes I’m instructed of things I must shake off,
remnants of hurt so visible you can brush it off like dandruff flakes.
Often good rises to the surface like a swirl of cream on a bitter cup of coffee,
Every other Wednesday goes like this,
I clutch a red throw pillow or purposely make myself sit back,
into the leather of the couch
I trace and retrace the shape of his glasses
I admire the perfect sheen of his tie.
I empty my brain, purging it,
much like the contents of my purse
Sometimes my keys appear or a key to something.
Sometimes it’s painful, like Monday morning after Dulcolax.
Still I end with a soft genuine smile from the parking attendant,
I hold the pay ticket almost as if it were hope,
and always stick it in the wrong way first,
Despite that I know better; its’ miraculous strip of magnetic information
that would boggle my mind if time allowed for such thoughts-
It goes to the right, always to the right.
The attendants tired eyes are warm
with a flicker of pain from some other life
the whites are weary and not so white,
like the brown of the middle leaked in.
Before Trump was in office he looked pained but happy,
I wonder what country he will be sent back to
and who will say goodbye in that same heartfelt way
every other Wednesday.