Tonight I talked to
the young African-American woman
who rang me up at HEB
because stories of suffering from another century reminded me
that she was a person.
Tonight I wondered
how could you be so full of hatred
as to yell obscenities at a six-year-old girl
just for going to school?
how could I be so self-absorbed
as to withhold genuine kindness and decency from others
just because I don't know them?
Tonight I learned
in ten items or less
that Shawna had kids and went to school
and worked til midnight to make ends meet
and was so grateful for her blessings.
I learned she wasn't a robot.
Like I had treated so many Shawnas before.