Dining Out

I choose my favorite table
and from the buffet,
my favorite lunch,
curry chicken on yellow rice
and spinach with potato.

Kneeling on her chair,
her back to her mother and her aunt,
a little girl—maybe four years old—
stares at me.
I take a bite of my food.
Her question is loud and very specific.
"Is your eye missing?"
Isn't she adorable.
Her mother and her aunt
give me their brightest smiles.

Why didn't I just say "Yes."
But I waited too long.
"You're old," she observes.
I speak without thinking. "You will be too,
if you live long enough."

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