Two Encounters

Today a man said something to me that I’ve articulated hundreds of times in my life, mostly to seemingly deaf ears and uncomprehending minds.

Isn’t it awful when you’re trying to walk down a hall and people come right at you, but because you’re swaying back and forth, neither of you can pass?

The man had already moved aside for me in the local thrift store.  When he did so, I perceived the staggering truth of our synergy in the lurch of his scissoring steps.  We mirrored each other.  I  apologized for inconveniencing him, but he dismissed my remorse.   He beamed and I chuckled.  We met each other’s eyes.  Then he continued out of the store, leaving me clutching a lace curtain. I stood in the aisle shaking my head and grinning. I had finally met someone who did not wince as I tried to explain my inability to dart around him.

A little while later, I wheeled a buggy from the Family Dollar store and loaded my purchases into the back of the RAV.  Before I could return the empty cart, a man approached me from the parking lot.  Let me take that, he insisted.  I saw you come out of the door.  I’m always ready to help a sister.  He reached over and gave me a half-hug, then limped away, pushing the cart.  I smiled and called out my thanks.  He lifted one hand without turning.

It’s the twenty-eighth day of the fifty-second month of My Year Without Complaining.  Life continues.



Dust of Snow

The way a crow
Shook down on me
The dust of snow
From a hemlock tree

Has given my heart
A change of mood
And saved some part
Of a day I had rued.

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