The Ghost of Christmas Pluperfect

I am the Ghost of Christmas Pluperfect
Born when you had decided to ignore your fellow man
Growing when you had decided to take from your fellow man
Matured when you had decided to abuse your fellow man

You are the result of your decisions
Blinded when you had removed your inner sight
Deafened when you had removed your inner ear
Lost when you had removed your inner compass

Reflecting to the world your path’s history
Fated when you had wandered away from home
Dirtied when you had left the well-trodden road
Bleeding when you had tripped over your own stumbling block

Lessons right in front of you
Written when you had screamed for help
Bound when you had lifted your arms to the sky
Learned when you had opened your eyes

Presents within your reach
Taken when you had seen your fingers against the blue sky
Opened when you had touched the white clouds
Thankful when you had become part of our colorful world

You became who you were meant to be
When you had kissed your wife
When you had hugged your children
When you had looked out of your window to feel the joy of neighbors

I took my leave of you
When you had found your need for others
When you had rejoined the family of man
When you had no further use for me

Coffee Shop Table

Scratched by

Students
Grandparents
Babies
Siblings
Lovers
Silverware
Coins
Coffee cups and plates
Books
Papers
Pens
Arguments
Decisions
Creating
Erasing
Sharing
Spills
Musings

Used by those

Wise
Wicked
Innocent
Deluded
Ignorant
Mad
Rushed
Focused

Works with

Smiles
A soft word
Can I take your order?
More coffee?
Here is your check
A hand over the loose change

Existing for another

Shift
Day
Year
Lifetime
Commercial lease
Refurbishment

Cleaned and cleaned again
Old wood pattern
Medium tan
Off white
Reflections of the ceiling lights on the scratches
Lines and curves
Heads tilt one way then another to see the next story
Shiny pictures of experience
Different wrinkles of age
More tales of years past
Another song from the road
A bard for dining patrons

Closing time
The owner presses the switch
Looks around
Sighs
Walks outside
Locks up
No more stories until morning’s light
Quiet
Late night waiting for the first rush of the day

Coffee shop table

We are its props in the play of life