Wednesday, October 5, 2011

small talk


She poured his coffee and he sipped it, holding the hot green-swirled porcelain in both hands.
She could not see his eyes under his dipped flat black fedora as he raised the cup, both elbows on the Eat Here! lunch counter. But he nodded, and she thought all was well.
Her back was turned, busy wiping the back counter, and he looked up and said, "good." She looked over her left shoulder, smiled just a bit, and she mouthed the word, "good."
A man in a business suit walked in and sat at the opposite end of the counter and she waited on him, pencil at the pad ready. He sipped more coffee and thought he heard her laugh, but looking at her didn't think she looked too happy at a distance just the same as close up with those hunched shoulders. Melancholy, he surmised. He lit a cigarette. She may be drowning in it, he feared.
The business man was deep in french fries and studying the Wall Street Journal when she came back around again to an emptied coffee cup.
"Worried"?
"Yes," she replied, pouring coffee from a steaming carafe.
"About?"
She was quiet for about twenty minutes and he thought she appeared more hunched than humanly possible. And he thought maybe she had been weeping, her eyes shining. It was getting dark and the yellow street lights topped with black iron points began to glow bright.
"I worry about the little birds," she said just above a whisper as she wiped the dry counter in front of him with a clean white rag.
"Oh." He paused, took off his fedora and set it in the seat next to him. "Well, I wouldn't worry. After all, the elephants are flying south."
She smiled, and he thought maybe he'd saved her just as she was being washed out to sea. "No," she pondered, playing along, "I think more to the northwest."

6 Comments:

Blogger Michael D (Wryter) said...

Darn, your sooo puzzling!

But also, at the same time, I've been wondering if I even need to know at all.

But anyhow, don't worry too much about them birds. or elephants, as it may seem, too much. I feel they will be okay.

Yip. <8^)

10/05/2011 11:20 PM  
Blogger Kathy Bischoping said...

"About twenty minutes" - lol!

10/06/2011 12:22 AM  
Blogger Trellissimo said...

Wonder where the Ellie will roost? lol

10/06/2011 3:36 PM  
Blogger Tess Kincaid said...

I worry about the little birds...

10/06/2011 3:56 PM  
Blogger Helen said...

So much fun making small talk!

10/07/2011 1:01 PM  
Blogger Jackie Jordan said...

I always appreciate a little levity in casual conversations.

10/07/2011 8:24 PM  

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