On A Park Bench. - Poem by Terry Collett
People build their own prisons,
she said, build up their own walls.
He said nothing, knowing not
what to say. He liked just that
she spoke, her voice, the tone
and timbre of it. As she spoke he
watched her lips move, the way
her tongue danced inside her mouth,
upon teeth. Mental wards are full
of people who have totally entombed
themselves, she added, placing one
of the sandwiches she'd bought
inside her mouth, while she spoke.
The park bench was hard, there
was a smell of spring in the air,
he watched her chew, now silent,
her mouth closed, masticating.
Her silence drew his attention to
the way she sat, one leg crossed over
the other, the black shoe and foot
dangling. The lower length of stockinged
leg, showing, the dark skirt just over
the knee, nothing else to see. He lifted
his gaze to her cloth hidden thighs,
the way they disappeared into her
waist, slim, drawn in. Ones I used to
see on my tour of the wards had drooling
mouths and cross eyes, she said,
swallowing the small sandwich bits.
He moved his eyes from her waist to
her impressive tits, let his eyes settle,
rested them there, as if they were weary
travellers after a long journey. And the
smell, she added, reeked of urine; everywhere
one put one's nose. He wanted to lay his
head between or upon or even beneath
those beautiful breasts. She jawed on, he
wasn't listening anymore, he was engrossed
in a different story, an actor in a different play.
She took another sandwich and was silent
again, staring at him, taking his measure,
unaware, no doubt, of his silent pleasure.
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