Heeding Warnings

I finished my tea and what did I see

this morning to my dismay?

Those little black leaves at the bottom of the cup,

foretold of bad tidings today.

I feared I might slit my throat while I shaved,

so I slid the blade mindfully slow,

tried not to think how in my working hours

I might be hammered by merciless fate.

With great trepidation I drove to the office

expecting each moment to crash,

when I finally stopped in my parking stall,

my bacon sat wholly intact.

On the elevator ride to the 14th floor,

I recalled the Towering Inferno,

how the elevator plummeted to the bottom of the shaft,

with a quick choired scream and blood splatter.

When those doors slid open and I’d not yet died,

I whispered a small prayer of thanks,

and as I entered my office and looked out at the city

I was careful not to trip through the glass.

Until I felt ready to go get some coffee,

I sat staring off scared into space,

my boss stopped by but didn’t fire me,

for I lied, said I was doing deep thinking.

In the coffee room was a puddle on the floor

that a co-worker ahead of me slipped in,

I noted his fall and sidestepped the mess,

got my coffee and carefully exited.

I checked my voicemail back at my desk,

with luck the phone cord didn’t choke me,

for lunch I nibbled a liverwurst sandwich,

prepared to Heimlich myself.

At quitting time I chose the stairs to my car,

drove home hardly breathing at all,

found my front door open and fearing intruders

gave the cops a quick 911 call.

There was no one inside, and nothing was missing,

which displeased the officers, I’m guessing,

I apologized without any wild gesticulation

as I eyed their automatic weapons.

That night for dinner I took only clear broth

and I drank it in careful sips,

while brushing my teeth I breathed with relief

for surviving the day without grief.

Lying down in bed I remembered that prayer,

that God save you should you die in your sleep,

I thought about dying while being asleep,

guessed I’d never even know if he took it.

To die in your sleep, that’s the dream end for me,

there’s no pain immediate or lingering,

go to sleep never waking, so peacefully dying,

be it happenstance, fortune, or fate.

As I slipped into darkness I pondered my day

and wondered about tea leaf fortunes,

should I keep on believing what they might portend,

or go purchase a tea leaf infuser?

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