At the Goodwill store
I found the shelves empty
of its namesake item.
There were plenty of spoons
knives, forks, coffee cups,
shirts, sweaters and shoes.
I pictured the antebellum south
and wondered if period resale shops
had old slaves that owners tired of.
Since I stood so long in thought
a store clerk came over
to determine if I was daft or a thief.
She pointed out white porcelain
salt and pepper shakers
with bible verses printed on them.
I asked if they had a black set
with gold lettering
in the stock room.
She blurted Smart ass
then covered her mouth with her hand
and fled back to the register.
I should have left the store immediately
but lingered going through wool sweaters
as if they possibly had my size.
copyright © 2021 Kenneth P. Gurney