when I’m accused of being…

too kind, just being as me as my self, what am I to do?

A flirt, if you will — label it as you must.

Boss always getting on my case for being too friendly with the customers.

Is customer service not an exercise in bestowing ample amounts of directed friendliness?

I would be fired day one if I were ever to get a job at the DMV you say?

(Or would it just suck all life’s joy right out of me and I would become one of them —

detached, devoid of interest in this thing called being human?)

Is it not the job of the barista to spread a little joy in this contrary world?

Take an interest in your day or your trip to Costa Rica or your crushing losses?

Compliment you on your new jeans, ask where you’ve been since I saw you last,

say what I feel you need to hear?

Not just for the thoughtful or random bits of cash and coin,

not just for that full tank of liquid gas at the end of the week —

not because I want them to want something for me.

I am human longing

for heartfelt (albeit desultory) conversation.

It is early, I know.

We both need our coffee.

You and me.

And it’s been so long since I’ve seen you.

Where you been hiding yourself lately?

You know, that shirt really brings out your eyes.

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