Poet’s Corner

A Willing Heart

The phone rang –


The voice said

Cheery enough


“Hello, it is me.

You said I could call

Should call,”

She said timidly.


The voice responded;

But this time with some hesitation:

“Yes, I did.”


They both became silent for a too long second.


She spoke:

“Is this a bad time?”



The voice said,

Though without stopping to take a breath continued:

“It is just,


You know,

This the season –





Her heart sank a bit deeper

Than it had been

Before she picked up the telephone;

But she felt desperate,

And thus continued:


Of course,

I understand.

It is just that,

Well you said I should call

If I needed help,

You said you wanted to help

And I do

Need help.


The conversation grew silent.


The voice suddenly felt annoyed,

How does she not understand

That one says those things to be polite,

To be in the spirit of the season;

But surely she must understand

The timing is impossible.

“I suppose you need money,” the voice says,

Almost hoping

A check might put an end

To this conversation,

As she has a hundred things to do.



“No,” she says,

I do not need money.


“Oh,” the voice says surprised,

“Then you need to borrow what –

A car,

Some luggage,

A piece of equipment?”


“No,” she says,

I do not need to borrow anything.


The voice feels irritated,

“Do you need me to man some fund raising booth,

Wrap gifts for the needy,

Pick someone up at the airport,

Or make sandwiches for the homeless?”


Once again she says “No,”

Beginning to feel like it was a mistake to call,

That she must have misread the intent of the uttered words.

“Are you collecting food, clothing, or toys,

Is that what you need,

A new unwrapped item?”

The voice speaks up.


“No, I am not collecting anything,” she says.


“Then what?

I do not understand,

Why did you call me?

This is the busiest time of the year,


What do you need?”

The voice asks.


She feels silenced,

And perhaps mistaken in her understanding of the offer

Which led her to call.

“You said,

You said you understood

And that sometimes

We just need to know a willing heart.”


The voice reiterated her words:

“A willing heart,

I remember now,

That is what I said.”


“I was just looking for a willing heart,

But I think I may have called

At the wrong time.”


~ Cristina Jill Mosqueda ~

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