I measure the tiny cubes by the fistful:
brunoise of dried apple and crystallized ginger
that steep to an infusion of hibiscus pink.
Almost November and our skies
are getting a jump on the season,
featureless grey through newly-bare trees.
This is the brightest tea I have.
I remember the man behind the counter
who dropped a dry spoonful into each waiting palm,
the wall of spice jars like stained glass.
I came home with a tiny flagon of rosewater,
a quart of zaatar, a giant bag of apple tea.
I wonder if he's okay now.
I wonder if anyone is.