hello, beautiful (2014)

i take up space inattentively over two seats,
legs jumbled, in the midst of thought
riding home underground,
writing in my notebook

hello, beautiful

a short latino man intrudes
with a smile or with a leer — i can’t decide

 

at one time i might have
cringed reactively;
strange creep

but today i smile

what does it take from me to be gracious?
here is an opportunity to live
up to what he claims to see in me

he leaves the subway car,
perhaps in search of another
to teach something to

~

does the tree look down at the shade-seeker in disdain?
does the bird turn up his beak at the admirer and say,
shut your ears,
you are not worthy
to hear me?

 

if beauty is with you
it is by no effort of yours

~

and did he not say those words to me
while i was holding the pen?

when else am i beautiful,
if not when being what i am?

when else am i beautiful,
if not when beyond myself,

if not when living in you?

~

thank you,
man from the subway;
thank you very much!

One thought on “hello, beautiful (2014)

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