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Efficiency

In work boots and plaid and feed store cap,
he looked like an elderly farmer
next to me in the stationery aisle,
one calm spot in the supermarket rush hour.
He told me he probably owned a thousand pens.
Whenever a new one caught his eye he had to have it.
I smiled and backed away, tired, late getting home,
shopping list lost as usual.
Sometimes I have to be stern with myself:
There wasn’t enough time to stumble
into rambling conversations with eccentric strangers.
But he said he used them all,
nearly shouting as I reached the end of the aisle,
because there was so much to write and draw every day.
Hours later, I haven’t saved any time at all–
still wondering, wishing I could trade this back
for time to wheel my shopping cart closer
and ask  him to tell me
what he’s drawing now.

2 responses »

  1. I can relate to this. I usually cut those conversations short also, then wonder later what I missed by doing that. Lovely. Thank you for sharing this… 🙂

    Reply

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