Tell the Palms

Sometimes, there is no competition.
One must humbly learn to love the opposite.
To turn the table over and eat from the other side
Where there are options and creative stains next to
Hand carved names of all the lovers who did not
Make it to their expiration dates of forever.
I dine invited and obligated to
the breadcrumbs of a few misspelled words
And a few pieces of dried gum but
No curses and no enemies.

It is best to not beat yourself thin and to
Pull your napkin over your knees as if it were a blanket.
At breakfast time when the sun kisses at the doorway,
Be ever thankful for the warmth.
Do not interfere with where the milk derives.
Do not speak about the miles traveled back and forth.
Quietly fill your bowl and bless the maker for her favor.
Thank the water clouds in the sky above
For setting an example of how to feed a fragile thing
When there is no real reason to.

With both hands clasped, whisper into them how
These are the days of grace and dignity,
Where malice is the loudest shame and
Consideration could be the safelight which
guides the lost souls home.

Tell the palms,
These are the days that watch us closer than
a child left behind for the TV to devour.
These are the days where quality and depth shake hands
And make tasteful jokes about the treaties.
These are the days of the watermarked watchmen
Who are winding at the back of the eyes,
Praying and sipping holy spirits through
Paper thin straws and ceramic bowl hands.

Tell the palms about your business
and how its fruits glow upon your face.
Tell them how you like your coffee with one sugar
And no cream in that old chipped mug.
Tell them how the darkened days got to be so long
And how fireflies still manage to hover at the end,
When the ink has finally dried upon it.

Sometimes there is no competition.
There is only the gratitude of prayer
And laced fingertips that quake as you
Tell the palms how you couldn’t use a silver spoon
To bury your differences,
But happened to bury them nonetheless.
And not in the belly of a love-starved beast
But in the bottom line of the final arrangements.

Tell the palms,
Marinated mercy is a magnificent meal.
Sometimes the feelings fade and
This is something to be grateful for
Not only when they are bad.
Tell the palms
And when you are done,
Lift your head high enough to
Congratulate the courage in your bones for showing up
With foil-covered forgiveness and amazing grace.

Tell the Palms × ajthewriter


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