Thrift Store

Maybe I wanted to avoid the empty hours of Friday night.
Maybe I drifted in because the doors were still open at seven.
Maybe the company of cast-offs felt like family.

Maybe it was the midnight blue of the slender tumbler that caught my eye.
Maybe it stood out from the plain, short glasses around it, the way he
stood out in his Air Force uniform, home from boot camp.
Maybe that’s why I thought of him, the one my mother disapproved of,
and she was right of course, I was only eighteen.

Maybe I moved along between the aisles because Mother had said
there were others to choose from, and she was right of course,
there were others.

Maybe I could learn to love

the fake fica . . . gold silk leaves . . . the pretender
the camouflage vest . . . lakeside stalker . . . duck hunter
the ragged golf bag . . . connoisseur . . . of uptown women
the orange plaid sofa . . . flattened cushions . . . sports channel specialist
the old Sinatra LP. . . solo act . . . the entertainer.

Maybe learning to love is what I’ve never learned to do.
Maybe not everything should end up in a thrift store.
Maybe among what we’ve tossed away is one we should have kept.

Maybe that’s why I took the tall tumbler home with me,
the Air Force Blue,
the one my mother disapproved of.