of his quiet celebration
the day of my home inspection
to learn that lily white me
would be moving in and not "colored."
Nevertheless most evenings,
wrestling my bike to the top of the stoop
I greet him warmly --
hand upraised as I fumble with my keys --
with the insipid fare of small talk
cast like a grappling hook
across an ocean
seeking purchase in the spongy ground
of "Good evening,"
and "A long day done."