Thursday Poem

Stories From Life

I thought I was entitled to tell only one story, my story,
until I heard yours. You told me about yourself in a way
that made your story a part of me, giving me two stories.
One night I told them to a friend in a bar—she was sitting
next to her husband, who was talking to someone on his
other side, so she listened, and then she told me her story,
and it made me richer. My face hurt, as it does when I smile
and listen. I took our three stories to a party, and in telling
them I mixed them up, and the stranger I was with grew
excited and claimed to understand. We sat in a corner, and
our time together seemed more than flirting. But looking back,
I think it was flirting. I was carried away like a person who
wears jewels.

by Nancy Lagomarsino
The Secretary Parables
Alice James Books, 1991