She greets me with a quick smile
Bright as a sparrow’s eye.
Her taxi-driver husband
Unable to make my pickup today
Has, with rare kindness
Recruited her help.
Her name is Rosemary, her voice
Lilting and laughing, her chequered shirt
Yellow as sunshine.
Her friend Joan, coffee-skinned and trendy
Wears pragmatism and sunglasses
Like antique pearls.
Around one mobile wrist
Her Pandora bracelet overflows with charms:
Statue of Liberty, a ship
A green glass bead
Glowing like an idol’s eye.
They banter, these two, with the ease
Of old friends, comfortable
As soft flannel pajamas
On a cold night.
No awkwardness, not even with strangers
Their conversation invites, even welcomes
Drawing me in.
Their gift of intimacy, their benediction of kindness
Stays with me long after the afternoon ends.
Having received, it is now my turn
To freely give.