A waitress ponders behind a smile:
Standing at the counter, tossing clean cutlery into the grey rubber corrals . . . she thinks of how their relationships mirror the stages of humans interacting intimately.
In the first furrow, the spoons merge. Nesting into one another. Curving and fluid.
In the middle corrugation – the middle years – the forks predominate. They grow prongs. They have open spaces. And defensive weapons. And the capacity to weave into and out of each other’s wefts.
In the final trough, lined like slender soldiers, the knives lie in wait. Straightened. Having grown rigid. Having bared serrated edges. Living parallel lives.
All tucked neatly into a gallantly folded napkin.