Mercury In Retrograde

Paul held his hat in a hat he found on the ground in his hands.
Mentally, he calculated it had been thirty years since he did so.
He stood near a rose garden.
He stood away from the traffic light with its cardboard sign wielders.
He stood with knees bent a little from an invisible weight.

Paul held his tongue while tasting words.
He attempted to discern which words suited his request.
He waited for the moment his god appeared.
He waited for the instant an angel of the lord appeared.
He waited for a passing disciple.

None arrived in twenty minutes.

Paul stood in a puddle of awkwardness.
Mercury retrograded a bit more as he stood there with damp shoes.
Mercury carried a message down from the heavens
in the guise of a bee attracted
to the sweat on Paul’s hatless brow.

Mercury’s message appeared as a yellow ticket on a windshield.
The windshield broke and crumpled under the weight of the message.
The broken windshield rays became Paul’s guiding star.
He looked in the car’s sideview mirror and saw his hat was on straight.

The hat that was not his hat he left on the expired parking meter.


copyright © 2019 Kenneth P. Gurney

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