“What is eloquent is the passing moment
and the moment that will come after it.”
¬—Maurice Blanchot

On a sunny Saturday afternoon he was about to read
“Fooling With Words,” when his wife asked him to peel
a basket of Kirby cucumbers.

It seemed like a waste of time, a boring task, when his breath
was suddenly caught off guard. He thinks of his son’s Guru,
who once advised breathing to be the key to equanimity.

He lets go of habitually held breath, inhaling deeply
as if he was drinking in ozone filled air unfurling off
the Victoria Falls of Zimbabwe.

Sunlight illuminates the greenness of the cucumbers
reminding him of the pickerel he caught at Rudd Pond
in a boat drifting lazily into a flotilla of white lily pads.

The monotony of peeling assumes a musical rhythm
revealing their unabashed nakedness, soon to be sliced
and slathered with champagne vinegar and Vidalia onons.

Like a monk in a monastery, his chore becomes a meditative
practice in patience as he settles into the radiance of now.
He gets profoundly quiet, becoming open to what is.

At peace with himself, overwhelmed with love for his wife,
he decides to plan for a queen sized coffin to lie in tandem
forever. The first one to go will reserve a space.

Milton P. Ehrlich