today i took a walk around the block
to deliver a piece of mail that was
mistakenly left on my doorstep.
right number. wrong street. big sun.
i turned left down D. people sat
on their front steps. a white guy with
an adorable mutt, an older black woman
her hair a half-inch frizz like my
mother’s, a child playing in the sprinkler.
and in an instant, an instinct,
like a spring-loaded moment, I waved.
the white guy waved back, his dog licking
its own nose. the older black lady pressed her
palm my way, tickled the air, couldn’t help
but grin at me, as I smiled at the kid who was
too busy laughing in the water to acknowledge
a wave. but there was a wave. a wave
that momentarily pushed us back to shore.
and just for a few seconds, just for the time
it took for a hand to go up and down, just for
the time being, we all stopped holding our breath