Small Talk

 Small Talk

*Dedicated to introverts everywhere

I see you coming my way
and I realize it is inevitable,
this obligatory encounter
that is as joyous
as marriage counseling.

Hallways, offices, and doorsstay away hands
laugh at me from a distance,
condemning me
to meaningless interaction,
forced fakeness,
compulsory conversation.
Escape is not an option this time.

And it happens.

Your pace slows,
we make eye contact and smile.
          Just. Keep. Walking 
          Don’t completely stop.
But you do.
“I’m so glad it’s Friday!  How are you?”

What do I even say.
Energy and motivation drain from my veins.
But, I’ll play.
With pretend purpose we pause
long enough to say

Yes, words echoed off the walls
and friendly laughter fooled them all.
But what was shared?
Five minutes felt like fifty.

And now I need to sit down,
and think.


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