All I want to be is generous but not stupid.
Is it insane to leap and leap
and hope to always land upright
because I mean well, want to mean good
I feel the threads in the five-dollar bill
As I hand it over to you
you need it more than I
the look in your warm, tired brown eyes
I hop back in my car, turn the key in the ignition
The engine clears its throat
In my rearview mirror
through my glasses
I see the tattered brim of your Coca-Cola baseball cap
as you lean up to the window of the rusty Buick
lean up to check on the sleeping silhouette in the passenger seat
I pull the stick, bring the car into drive
warm hum steady
And behind me you hold up the waist of your too-big pants
while you push open the door of the Super America,
Cig ads swinging,
Sleigh bells beneath the “Open” sign jangling.
When I say “Godspeed,” I’m really wishing you
Not velocity but a higher love and protection, stranger.