Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Joan Colby- Two Poems


We are seated at a table
With the Super-Ball winners,
A couple in their sixties
Who are 300 million odd dollars
Richer than we are.

He was a plumber or electrician,
Some sort of tradesman. She
A housewife with bad teeth.

They frequented a local bar.
Someone else bought the tickets
To whom they promised a million dollars
When it turned out they had the numbers.

Then reneged, a lawsuit settled
Out of court. It was in the papers.

Of course, we don’t bring that up.
Just listen while he expounds
On their world travels, flashing a
Pinky ring with a diamond
Like a trapdoor. She’s bejeweled
As well and has new teeth
Regular as a picket fence.

They live in a new house
In a gated community
Where none of their old friends
Can get at them.


She has the earliest slot.
Seven o’clock.
He accompanies her
Sports shirt pulled taut
Over a pendulous belly.
She’s got that hairdo
Cheap salons impose
On women her age.
He fidgets, worries.
A nurse comes in, explains
The tech is on the way, the machine was down
We’re running a little late.

She’s changed
Into the blue paper gown.
The reddened flesh of her upper breast
Looks raw, looks scribbled.
He doesn’t notice, his mouth
A bad parenthesis, a frown
Engraving the battlements
He’s about to mount.

“We’ll miss the breakfast.
The best machine.”
But she gets in
And out in time to suit him.

Off they go
To pull those levers,
To hope the quarters pour
In jingle jangles of distraction.

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