I asked you your name
because I knew the only way to repay you
would be to write you a poem —
that there would be no handing over of cash,
no exchange of phone numbers for future use.
I knew I could never collapse in your arms there
and weep as I might have had we been alone
or had you been an inch taller or wider.
Could not even touch your shoulder tenderly
to let you know that I know
are the human in humanity.
Your black knitted cap, a tad too wide for your delicate skull
may be what stopped you from continuing along the dirt road
when you saw me waving my arms from the highway above.
Your black knitted cap was certainly what stopped me
from wrapping my arms around your 54 kilos when you finally
succeeded in screwing on the spare.
I asked you your name before we parted
because I knew then what I know now
which is that all there was between us is all
there ever will be, that once you changed
my tire and afterwards I asked you your name.