Sometimes you just connect

like that,

no big thing maybe

but something beyond the usual business stuff.

It comes and goes quickly

so you have to pay attention,

a change in the eyes

when you ask about the family,

a pain flickering behind the statistics

about a boy and a girl in school,

or about seeing them, every other Sunday.

An older guy talks about his bride,

a little affectation after twenty-five years.

A hot-eyed achiever laughs before you want him to.

Someone tells about his wife's job

or why she quit working to stay home.

An old joker needs another laugh on the way

to retirement.

A woman says she spends a lot of her salary

on an au pair

and a good one is hard to find

but worth it because there's nothing more important

than the baby.


In every office (school*) you hear the threads

of love and joy and fear and guilt,

the cries for celebration and reassurance,

and somehow you know that connecting those threads

is what you are supposed to do

and business takes care of itself.

by James Autry

(*Apologies to the author)