Monday, February 29, 2016

The Donut Lady

There's a new donut shop in town,
so we gave it a try
and loved it.
Great donuts,
kind service,
home-towny feel.

An additional bonus
keeps bringing me back:
Whenever it's my turn
to bring a treat for the English department,
I stop by to get a dozen,
and she always throws in
two or three extra.

Maybe the cost is already figured into the fee,
and maybe it's just a marketing ploy
in which I am not really getting
something for nothing,
but that's okay;
I understand that I am getting something for something - 
I'm getting treated well for loyalty,
not the fake kind that's
leveraged out of those "loyalty" cards,
but the loyalty that comes from
feeling loved
and then loving in return
without cards to stamp or scan to keep score.

Yes, I love this donut lady,
and I truly believe she loves me,
and not just because she gives me donuts,
and not, for her part,
just because I keep buying donuts,
but because we've decided
to treat each other with 
consistent kindness,
and what is love
if not the perpetual decisions
to do just that?

In that spirit,
with each visit
we renew our vows of
"Is that all for you today?"
"Yep - thanks"
under the neon sign of this bakery-chapel,
witnesses lined up behind me.
Then the cash register solemnizes the ceremony
and we exchange those doughy rings,
sprinkles like diamonds strewn across the glaze.
I internalize the eternal symbolism of this circle
one bite at a time
demonstrating my finite steps along our forever journey,
finishing off the last bite with consummate satisfaction.

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