Just outside the temple where I had come to pray,

you tugged at my sleeve and asked, “Would you like to buy some gratitude?”

You looked serious as though you were indeed selling something of consequence.

I asked you how much it would cost and for how long would it last.

“It’ll only cost you whatever you could spare right now and it’ll last…(here, he paused),

for as long as I hold in my palm whatever it is that you’re giving me”.

It didn’t seem like such a good deal and so I asked, “Could you make it last longer than that?”

“Sure”, he said, casting a thoughtful glance at my car parked some distance away.

“It only takes maintenance now and then, just like your car”.

All this happened just outside the temple where I had come to pray,

for some maintenance.