Poem Hunter
Appreciating The Tableware
KN (April 26,1942 / Lincoln, Nebraska)

Appreciating The Tableware

I took the morning off today
so I could stop in to see old friends,
actually sit down and get caught up.

Saw an old friend from high school.
We’ve stayed in touch through the years.
Intervals between our meetings are getting shorter.
We seem to cherish these moments now,
not take them for granted any more.
He has prostate cancer.
I have Parkinson’s.

As we get older,
my male friends and I
are more apt to hug when we say goodbye.
We start with a handshake,
but as soon as our hands meet,
we seem to realize
our friendship warrants
an embrace.

In that moment
we silently acknowledge
things never spoken:
that we are mortal and the clock is ticking;
that goodbyes at our age have a greater
chance of being final;
that friendships that have lasted
through the years are sterling, not plate.

There was a time when I didn’t
pay much attention to the tableware.
Now I 'm starting to see
the beauty in a pattern of silver,
the brilliance of freshly polished sterling,
the rich patina of age.

I should take the morning off more often.


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