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It is easy to park at your house,

Because the curbs are easy,

Because they are asphalt, rounded by design and worn by years,

So that I can roll up upon them

And then away just a bit

And know that I have placed the car as close to the curb as I can.

Goodness knows

The sharp granite curbs in this town

Would not be near as forgiving.

 

It is easy to park at your house

Because the street is easy.

A side street, off of a side street,

Little-traveled even in busy times,

Less so even than mine.

I can unbuckle my seatbelt

And throw the car door open, heedless of danger,

Knowing that it would never catch a car in passing.

Goodness knows such an act

Would be a clanging disaster on any other road.

 

These are excuses and deflections.

It is easy to park at your house,

More easy than on any other side street I know,

Because – I know you enjoy seeing me.

The rest of the world I fear like the granite curbs,

Whether or not they deserve it,

And shy away from them, expecting immediate and harsh return

On slight mistakes.

It is such a silly thing to compare someone to an asphalt curb –

Of all things! – And yet there it is,

And there you are, an old friend

Who forgives my small mistakes,

 

More than I do.

Goodness involves such mercy.

 

Granite curbs are righteous, in their defense,

Willing to punish harshly for transgressions upon their person,

Whether small or large – the punishment is the same:

I lose a tire.

Goodness knows my sister has lost more than one

To the harsh justice of such curbs.

The punishment is large, always,

As if all who strike the curb do it knowingly.

 

I would rightly be punished for throwing my car door open on a busy street,

By the simple fact of losing the door,

And by whoever was injured thereby,

As a form of extracting recompense, to make it clear

That I deserved subservience and penury

For such a selfish folly,

For knowingly endangering others.

 

I roll up along the rounded curb

By the side of your house

And pirouette my way out of the car,

Knowing that here, at least, I can be heedless.

Perhaps not cavalier,

And I pray I am never so selfish

As to transgress more than you can forgive,

As if rolling my car up onto the sidewalk,

Assuming that no biker or hiker would ever wish to take that path,

Assuming you would overlook even this –

Goodness means grace and care as well as freedom and laughter.

The asphalt curb understands this,

And the granite curb does not.

 

Whatever else may come

I will remember this –

That at your door

I am welcome.