The Jerks I Mistook Them For

The day after a night in the bathroom, I walk slowly across the street.

There is nothing in my stomach and still, it makes dangerous rumbles.

The cars in the street must wait for me. It’s not a choice; my body will have it no other way.

I wonder if the drivers are muttering, Who does that woman think she is? Queen of this town? Let’s get a move on, your highness.

Drivers, I have been you. I have muttered and been annoyed at some jerk in the crosswalk.

Some jerk who spent the night heaving in the bathroom. Or maybe he just learned his position was eliminated. Or maybe she’s carrying the weight of a troubled child. Or maybe he was just having an awful day.

Drivers, I mistook that human in pain for some jerk slowing down my day.

Drivers, I don’t know if you’re doing that to me here in this crosswalk. You might see the load a human carries better than I do.

But, Drivers, you’ve given me a chance to remember - be decent to strangers, yes. And afford them grace, too.

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