Happy Hour

I meandered through the dimly lit bar,
Lost in the jungle of city professionals
Divesting the day’s stress in cocktails.

Freeing themselves from the monotony
Of pounding their daily business treadmills,
Anaesthetised by the loud throb of music.
Enticed by the call of happy hour
And that intoxicating sniff of the wild,
They unbuttoned their tightly held selves.

All overseen by the steady, prowling gaze
Of the blue toothed, hypervigilant bouncers,
in white shirts and panther black suits.

An upbeat waiter, on a mission to help,
Pounced on me, picking up my lostness.
He asked one question, framed in a token smile
And with not even a slice of fleeting hesitation,
He swung around and beckoned me on.

In unison, we marched to my destination.
I followed him down polished marble steps,
Into a dimly lit, dingy vaulted basement.
Pausing in front of an ordinary brown door,
I turned the metal handle cautiously – slowly.
It swung suddenly open and I stumbled in.

A breeze of welcoming warmth met me.
It took me by surprise and woke me up.

I listened to the stories all around me.
Told by ordinary people with big hearts.
I drank in the fruity cocktail of inspiration,
Salted with reality – the full-bodied flavour
Of generosity, courage and endurance.

Tiredness lifted and my working day faded,
Washed away by compassion in action.
Then spaciousness and ease arrived.

Unexpectedly, through that doorway
I slid into an entirely different world.

One, that drew me in and called me out.