Instead I got a heavy dose of fight or flight,
the voice of fear itself
spilling out of the speaker
of a simple restaurant drive thru.
Those first words, how may I help you, today?
commanded my attention,
the diction, the inflection,
the worst of the devil’s minions.
Turns out meeting your greatest adversary
in some spectacularly explosive way
is a reality reserved only to war and movies.

I hadn’t seen him since the day
he very nearly destroyed my life,
taking every advantage of me
before kicking me to the curb
jobless and without direction.
Now I had a couple questions to ask myself.
Speed away without a word
or continue forward undeterred?
Was I ready to face him again?

And in the precious seconds allowed for an answer,
I kept making up these questions.
Who really has power to wreck my day?
(I do)
Was I going to stay afraid forever?
Simple as that.

At the window, he asked how I’d been.
I said fine
then paid in silence,
took my drink in silence,
took my food in silence.

Forgiveness is saying a particular evil
holds no more power over you.
I’m not quite at that point yet,
but the cheeseburger was quite delicious.