Dear Mr. Someone Something

by | Jul 31, 2019 | Poetry

I came to order a dozen citrus scones
with orange glaze from where there have
always been citrus scones with orange glaze
displayed in the lit glass cases. I came
out of obligation and duty, the one errand
of three I was assigned, and so, was not
as cheerful as I could have been. (Nor were you
for whatever reason(s)). I could have asked, but we
were only companions for that short time, in that
space that smelled of yeast rising and the sickening
sweetness of frosting. Would that you would
not have dithered, standing in your contemplative way
as if selecting your chosen path for life, as if
that life depended on the ginger or cranberry
cookie. Would that you would not have become
quite so despondent at how the round crisp treat
was handled, so sad that you snapped, Good God,
man, careful! And then mumbled under your breath
of better days. Might have been the season that did
this, and ruined your shoes – the salt whitening
and eating away at their soles and the tender
leather. Might have been the north wind that left
your hair ruffled, reminding me of preening birds
of another season. And then: you rummaged around
to pay, dropping scraps of paper with indecipherable
handwriting on them from your pockets, and I was just
small enough to not bend quick enough to retrieve them
for you. Later, in the library’s parking lot, I saw
a father gently guiding his grown son across the ice
and helping him into their van and speaking of
reading to him soon, soon, while they sat in a room
where sun warmed the bent tops of their heads.

Photo used under CC.

About The Author


Kelly R. Samuels is a Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominee. She is the author of the chapbooks Words Some of Us Rarely Use (Unsolicited Press, 2019) and Zeena / Zenobia Speaks (Finishing Line Press, 2019). Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in numerous journals including Salt Hill, The Carolina Quarterly, Sweet Tree Review, Cold Mountain Review, and RHINO. She lives in the upper Midwest.