Keep My Heart Slow

She’d stayed in for the night, seeking peace and serenity.  She wanted to start the new year that way.

But now she really wanted hot chocolate.  She pulled her bomber jacket over her flannel PJs.  Boots, scarf, wallet.  She rushed down the sidewalk, breathing into the warmth of her scarf.

The heavy steel door slammed behind him.  Last week he’d had everything.  And now?  His buddy’s couch.  How did he not see it coming?

He practically walked into her.  “Sorry about that.”  She just nodded and kept walking.

“Hey, can I buy you a hot dog?”  He called after her before he could stop himself.

She turned.  He gestured to the cart outside the jazz club.

“No, but thanks.”  The last thing she needed.


A little surprised, she stopped.

“You’d be saving my new year.  It can’t start this way.”

She didn’t know why she was even listening.  All she wanted was a hot chocolate.

“I don’t like hot dogs.”  What was she saying?  Of course she liked hot dogs.

“We have delicious veggie dogs,” the vendor called out, trying to hide his enthusiasm.  He was used to hustlers and drunken messes stumbling around his cart.  These two gave him hope.

“Could I have fried onions on it?”  She could hear her grandmother’s voice:  Nothing good happens after midnight, my dear girl.

You can have anything you want, he thought.

“No,” interrupted the vendor.  “No onions.”

“Thanks anyway.”  Just as well, she thought.  She was too old for this.  So was he.

“If I can get onions, would you be able to fry them?”  He looked at the vendor.

“Yes,” the vendor chuckled.  That’s the spirit.

“I’ll leave my bass here with you.”  He said to her as he leaned his guitar case against the wall of the club.  “I’ll be right back with onions.”

The 24-hour convenience store clerk shrugged.  “Condiments?  Sure.  Whatever.  Just don’t urinate by the magazine rack.”


“Yeah.  It’s been a long night.  Anything else?”

On impulse, he poured hot chocolate from the machine.  Should he get the promo thermos to keep it warm for her?

Well, I came home
Like a stone
And I fell heavy into your arms

She watched her breath in the cold night air.  What was she doing?  She didn’t need some rebounding guy right now.  Definitely not.  She smiled.

These days of dust
Which we’ve known
Will blow away with this new sun

“What’s that song?”  She asked.  The vendor reached across the grill and turned up the volume.

And I’ll kneel down
Wait for now

How long had he been in the store?  He quickly stepped outside, glancing down the block.  She was still there.

And I’ll kneel down
Know my ground

“Do you have marshmallows?”  He asked the clerk.  Something told him that she liked them.

Paint my spirit gold…
Keep my heart slow

Easy, he tried to tell himself.  You don’t even know her.

And I will wait, I will wait for you
And I will wait, I will wait for you


[Lyrics in italics from:  “I Will Wait,” by Mumford & Sons.  Written by:  Marcus Mumford.  Original release:  Babel, 2012.]



5 thoughts on “Keep My Heart Slow

  1. Pingback: I Will Wait (Live) | Living a Beautiful Life

  2. My youngest daughter loves “Mumford and Sons,” and I posted something about one of their songs on a post. I have a list of various musical and other types of subject matters that runs along the side of my posts. I liked this one, hoping this story and its meaning will come true in the new year for the convenience store people… smiles, Robin

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Robin! Their music is wonderful, isn’t it? I’ll have to look for that post of yours, thanks for letting me know. I’m glad that you like this story and I hope its meaning will come true for the convenience store people as well! Thanks again 🙂


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