By Allie Robyn
We stopped at the teashop on Madison Street.
Abstract renditions of flowers hung from the walls.
A case displayed little pastries, perfect and neat.
The worker behind the counter gave us a smile.
We returned the greeting and found a seat.
We glanced at the menu and realized quickly
That most of the items were beyond our price range.
We decided on two soups and to share a tea.
A young waiter came and took our order.
He promptly left, then it was just you and me.
Some Red Hat Society ladies passed us by.
They laughed and chatted, walking easily, carefree,
Their red hats as glaringly out of place as I.
But you just smiled and carried our conversation.
Slowly I loosened up, found it natural to reply.
Our soups and a teapot with two cups were brought out.
The soup was interesting, but more important, warm.
It helped clear my throat of any lingering doubt.
Sometimes you would ask a question. Mostly, you smiled.
After we finished, you asked what I thought about.
I was confused; I’d told you I liked the meal.
You shook your head, your eyes laughed. That’s not what you meant.
What did I value most? How did it make me feel?
Would I chase after my dreams? Or let dreams chase me?
Which demons lived in my head? Which were real?
I stared at you, at a loss for words. You stared back.
I couldn’t remember the last time someone asked those questions,
Or when someone cared so much. It felt like an attack.
And I was unprepared, defenseless against it.
But I realized something, and my muscles went slack.
I cried in the teashop on Madison Street.