I have never understood
the impulse toward alchemy
in affairs of the heart, the desire
to make someone love you
who doesn’t already.
Knowing you is changing that.
Swirling cream toward a spoon’s bright vortex
in my morning coffee, whisking
an egg in a white bowl for French toast,
adding a dash of vanilla extract
and watching it pulsate in rings
across the milky surface,
I have begun wonder
if such ingredients might not exist,
and where I might find them,
if they do.
For the potion is not for strangers.
It is not something you slip
into the drink of a smashing blonde
at a singles bar, nor send to an enemy
to overcome an old antagonism.
No, it is meant to be sipped
in candlelight by a friend,
a good friend, in the timid silence
that follows laughter and tears.
Its magic is but to remove
for a single moment
whatever fear or doubt it is
that keeps one person from trusting another
implicitly, completely, forever.
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Copyright © 2008 by Bradley Steffens
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