Glass Shards

“Because even the smallest of words can be the ones to hurt you, or save you.” ― Natsuki Takaya

Months ago I dropped a little glass desert bowl on my tiled kitchen floor

and tiny glass shards shattered at an impressive radius around the drop site.

I swept and vacuumed.

Then swept some more.

Then vacuumed.

Then mopped and then vacuumed some more.

Still I found shards

clinging to the bottom of my sock,

and sometimes, to my chagrin, embedded in the heel of my foot.

No matter how hard I looked for the miniscule bits -the remnants of my clumsiness ,

I could never find them.


I would come across them at the most inopportune moment –

when I was hopping out the door, one foot shod, the other bare,

or when I was shuffling to get a glass of water before going off to bed.

And I’d have to find pair of tweezers and perform minor surgery and then find the broom and give the floor another going over.

When we throw out insult or hurt someone we love,

it’s like breaking a little glass bowl.

Instead of a slip of the hand it is a slip of the tongue.

A clumsy handling of emotion.

And no matter how hard we try to pick up the pieces and make amends,

there will always be little sharp glass grains of sand

that will hide in wait.

Reminding us that what we say, or don’t say, can haunt us for months.

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