Eaves Dropping On The Wait Staff At IHOP
by Loretta Diane Walker

The tang of coffee, pecan syrup, smoke
and bleach hovers over blue vinyl seats.
I am a part of the blue, the leftover odors
tiptoeing up my sleeves
and invisible to the six waitresses
occupying two booths behind me.

They are like a collection of Thursdays,
a day we bulldoze to get to Friday.
There are no ballads or poems
romanticizing its arrival.
The prefix is too needy,
to close to thirsty.
I am thirsty listening to them, but afraid
to disturb their intimacy.

I want a little girl.
How come you won’t have one?
I already have two kids and trying
to get child support from two daddies.
I want to wait until I get married
before I have the third one.
Well, make sure he is rich.
Paying income taxes is hell.

It’s four o’clock and I need to be…
need to be…somewhere although I forget.
Hunger is a snare drum rattling in my stomach!
I hope my words will not put a wrinkle in her fate,
keep her from meeting Mr. Friday
when my tongue taps out, “Excuse me”

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