Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Peter Makuck: After Work

Driving home in the cold rainy dark
still pissed at some colleagues,
I decided to stop 
and pick up my shirts at the cleaners.
 
The place was empty.  
I tapped the bell.  
Out of the rack room a young woman came.
When she looked at me, her eyes widened . . . .
 
I’d never seen her before. 
She had on earrings like wind chimes, 
like the ones my dad made 
and hung from an oak branch
 
next to our house—fine tunes 
when a breeze touched them off.
I gave her my ticket.
When she returned with the shirts,
 
her cheeks were shiny with tears.
I’m sorry,she said, but you look 
just like my father.  He died last month. 
She found her cellphone
 
and showed me a photo that looked
as if I’d taken a selfie. 
I’d heard about doubles,
but never believed.  I said I was sorry.
 
She came from behind the counter 
and quickly gave me a hug.
When another customer came in, 
she dried her eyes, and said:
I’m so glad you picked up today . . . .

I am too, I thought, stepping outside, 
no longer angry at colleagues
or the cold rainy dark.

Peter Makuck (born 1940) is an American poet, short story writer, and critic. He was the founding editor of the journal Tar River Poetry. He lives with his wife, Phyllis, on Bogue Banks, one of North Carolina’s barrier islands. His many books include Mandatory Evacuations (BOA, 2016)

Copyright 2019 Peter Makuck

Peter Makuck

One comment on “Peter Makuck: After Work

  1. chucktaylorauthor
    September 3, 2019

    Our lives are blessed by such sacred encounters more than we can remember. Make a poem of as many as you can!

    Liked by 1 person

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This entry was posted on September 3, 2019 by in Opinion Leaders, Poetry and tagged , , .

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