Thursday, February 20, 2014

The Lie (Poem 325)

Shaken by the idea of taking advantage, 
yet not enough to resist telling him what he 
wanted to hear, she knew the lie would remain, 
lightly folded and slightly threadbare 
from wear and tear, in her lingerie drawer 
for years. 

Who would not agree that happiness is more important than an engagement ring under your pale yellow, satin-encased pillow? 

On Sunday afternoon, at her mother's 
dinner, someone was asking questions.
Immediately, she gathered her cashmere 
coat and private concerns, tied a silk 
scarf around her neck, and said her
goodbyes. 

An hour afterwards, in a bleak, 
fifth-floor hallway, a certain detective presents a hawk-nosed investigator 
with the list of times and dates, then 
sits, tipped back in his arthritic 
desk-chair, and worries. 

The payments on the incandescent 
diamond ring--which he turns over and over 
in his right hand--are only half-finished, and their train will be departing 
(whether she's married or not) 
at half-past-six.

(c) by Hannah Six