Honey

There was no ginger in the cupboard. It didn’t come as a surprise because, come to think of it, I wasn’t sure that ginger was sold crushed in bottles like nutmeg or cinnamon, but it was disappointing. The lukewarm water in my mug hadn’t been hot enough to really steep the tea bag, so it tasted more like water than anything. In acceptance of the absence of ginger in the pantry, I settled for a meager drop of honey, so as not to overpower what little flavor the bag had succeeded in instilling. I tried not to make the way it settled at the bottom, unmoving, ineffective, any sort of metaphor. Instead, I picked up the mug and took as sip, seeking the nonexistent comfort a hot cup of tea had promised from my mug of tangy water.
Everything‚Äôs a metaphor, I remember telling someone once, eyes bright, heart racing, having just read a striking poem, and maybe it is. Maybe the honey does reflect my limp hair, my pale eyes, my arms, trembling at the thought of stirring the nectar in with a spoon. But that drop of honey has no control; it can’t stir itself, and I’m sure that if I put in any effort, I could change my surroundings. However, I’m painfully aware that there’s a clear distinction between power and strength, and I know that they drive each other, and there’s a sinking feeling brought on by the knowledge that somewhere in me, that connection is lost. How can it be that in a world of is and isn’t, in a sea of black and white, on a channel of yes and no, everything is might be and grey and maybe?
And the only comfort that I’ve found in my cup of tea, I realize with a tired smile, is the hollow memory of a metaphorical perspective. The honey at the bottom of the mug is gone when I check, and maybe that’s another metaphor altogether.

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