It was his idea, he texted me,
wanting to go for iced coffee or tea
in the afternoon when I really
needed to do some work, but I wanted
some company, so I rearranged
my plans, got showered and dressed, brought in the cat.
I asked where we should meet and noticed that
his reply was slow in coming. I was
putting on my shoes when finally he
responded that something had come up,
he wouldn’t be in town until later,
was I free to do something in the evening?
It was an inconvenience, but things do
happen sometimes, so I answered yes.
He said he was coming in at seven,
promised to text then so we could plan—
I wanted to stop in at an art-show opening;
after that, was up for food or drink.
Just before seven, I got ready
to go out again, did a little
cleaning just in case he came to my place
on the way out or maybe afterward.
At seven-thirty, I still had heard nothing
from him. Likewise at eight and at nine.
At nine-thirty, annoyed, I texted him,
asked if something better had come up.
He said no, he was just at home,
very tired and so very sorry.
By then, it was late, I too was tired.
He had my number; he should’ve called and said—
much earlier—that he wasn’t up to it,
when there still was time for me to make
some different plans. Once, I understand,
but twice in one day seems quite unfair.
Should I excuse, give him another chance,
or should I drop him from my list, move on?
T. Allen Culpepper