on certain afternoons
I cup palms around the outskirts of a mug holding Earl Grey and a sift
of sugar. Other days, I cut out eight sheets of square paper, turn a set of folds
into a lidded box. There is always a tempest at our elbows, heat that could rake
our heart clean through. Even counting our blessings, we hold back the number,
rein in the errant pleasures of any unearned delight. But on certain afternoons,
we find ourselves peeking through the keyhole of a door marked "Yes,"
and our fingers, without yearning or exertion or apology, reach for the handle. This
is the reason there is bread, as I write, rising on the kitchen counter, or how
I might explain the way my mind is on a plane to New Orleans, or why I am,
after all these years, still attempting cartwheels.