Lonnie Hicks

Freshman - 614 Points (www.lonniehicks.com / Chicago Ill)

The Dark - Poem by Lonnie Hicks

She cradled the coffee cup
her eyes on the door
each entrant receiving an expectant glance
but each time
it was not the one
her glance then
did a sad swan dive
into the swirling mist
above the coffee cup
she hoping to see a future there
in its foaming liquid
which would foretell
he would come
he would come.

She shifted her weight
to one side then the other
lifting her hand
to signal
for another cup to come
to sit beside the faulty one
which had erred;
he'd be there in a minute or two.
But he wasn't.

The new cup would correct that fault
new fumes would swirl
and tell a different tale
of one where he rush through the door
talking of late planes, cab fares
lost cell phones, eager anticipations
breathless sorrys, apologies and regrets
all to lie there on the white linen table top
on which was arrayed two dead mugs
of now cold and stale Colombian roast,
their porcelain profiles lined up
watching a third arrive
in the lengthening night
looking up to encounter my eyes
looking upon her tabled scenario;
she quickly looked away
and then back again
wondering I think,
if I was his messenger
had news of him
who should be in the Lausaus seat
opposite her
surely to rise from the dead
ever expected
but never arrived.

I take my coffee cup emissary
lift it in my palm
my hesitancy overcome
to glide into the Lazurus seat
my cup to my lips
as her's was;
all silent
no words needed
silent communion;
gentle healing
as my cup
came down to the table top
allowing a hesitant hand
to reach out
while her eyes
grew large
peering into the reflected glare
of the night window
seeing him descend
from a taxi-cab
planting a gentle kiss
upon she who smiled
falling back into the dark
and sitting erect
we both watched
her recede
a sideways smile
on her face
and he,
he came to the door
only then to realize
that the loving scene
he thought unseen
was in fact observed
by two
one of whom he knew
and one he did not.
His face wrenched, perplexed;
sin and retribution
joined now at the hip;
a bullet shot bounces back
once shot
and shooter then realizes
he will die
and apologize
simultaneously.

All now frozen;
he standing stock still
recognizing by eyewitness he is lost
turns on his heel
in full retreat
while we two
breathed for the first
our eyes
glide
to lock again
as we both rising simultaneously
to walk out
into the now hopeful dark.


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Poem Submitted: Friday, April 30, 2010



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