The edges of my lips
raise to smile at every passerby,
and in the pre-sunrise shuffle
it occurs to me to find this strange.
I acknowledge to my psyche the micro aggression of being told to smile,
and somehow smiling before asked
My eyes greet the expressions
of fellow travelers,
friends posing for selfies,
mothers with babies on their hips,
employees sitting at kiosks,
those sleeping outside,
those returning from night’s out,
and my feet pace familiarly.
I board the bus
and look up at a crescent moon,
pondering the socializing
that grips my most constant behaviors.
I gravitate towards a need
to question myself,
and I envision
how I might feel if that impulse lessons.
Will unconsciousness feel blissful,
Will the answers I reach for
serve me more than the ones I have?
Will the instincts I allow to surface
before sky light enters my days
illuminate more than embarrass?
Could the instinct that grooming
places in my hands
have another origination?
One that recognizes dignity
even when that
can be leveraged for violence?
One that communicates
connectedness beyond estrangement,
and even amidst estrangement.
Earnestly I moderate a robust dialogue
forming between my third eye
and my activating vocal chords.
Conveying that I am both
an unreliable narrator,
and one I am practicing trusting.
Above outside influences.
Beyond implicit biases.
Entangled with coping strategies.
and body language
and actions that
Mistakenly or not,
ambivalently or not,
unconfidently much of the time.
With the moon overcast
to all of my questions
I can’t easily answer.