Cocooned in sheets, she clings
to Caribbean dreams of topaz water
and white sand, calypso music
and fruity drinks with umbrellas.
Ever the pragmatist, I pull her
from spindrift with urgency of agenda.
All week she’s eyed the calendar’s
red circle like a dog unwilling
to step outside, front legs stiff,
claws dug into shag. If I never
go to the doctor, she reasons,
he can’t tell me anything’s wrong.
Knowing how hope fuels her engine,
I dangle promises of Virginia Beach,
a stroll along its boardwalk, languorous
stretch beneath a plump sun lolling
in endless sky. Push her out the door
with assurances that nothing will be amiss,
belief as certain as our weekend plans,
the ones we will completely forget
in a few short hours.
The Sweetest Lie
It didn’t come up at all today—
the way its tentacles
snake through the weave of her life.
I once worried its shadow
every bright moment
like shiny baubles stuffed in a sack,
but now and then
sunlight burns through