You told me you didn’t believe in calamity,
on a bench outside my favorite coffee shop.
I felt all right asking what the hell that meant,
but not scooting any closer.
It was freezing—almost dark—
and I hated your cigarette smoke,
but you looked wise and genuine.
You said it was all a bunch of bullshit,
that you, for one, had hope.
We didn’t shake hands when we parted,
and I’ve seen you distantly a few times since.
I want you to know
that I have hope, too.
I’d like just one
tepidly dissatisfied teen
to copy my words into a small blue notebook
to pore over on trains,
to savor and dissect.
And I think one will.
You could say that I, too, don’t believe in calamity.
And I’d never have known
but for that bench.
Jacqueline Colt hails from western MA and revels in exploring the world and studying the stories of the people and places she encounters.