Before Arriving

by Sally Molini

Walking to my friends’ place,
I know the evening will be
a series of stock visuals:

Humberto tossing salad,
me slicing bread while May
unfolds the table

in a room too small, our meal
a frugal routine of leftover
chicken and XFiles,

one of Humberto’s favorites.
A breeze might knock
blinds against the jambs,

swell white drapes to full sail.
I’ll pass on coffee,
go for a run between sea

and bottlenecked town,
the ocean my necessary edge,
a muse beyond caring.  Each day

feels like an old choice, the future
too familiar as long as
the past keeps showing up —

I knock on the door, bread still warm
in its foil cocoon, any expectation
just another recurring scene.