The Sensible Girlfriend

By Terry Wolverton

For C.

Like shoes

she chose for comfort,

not for style,

that fit her contours

without chafe

or blistering

Here is sanity.

It took her years to arrive,

like an explorer

settling at last

into uneasy retirement,

a small cottage

at the edge of the sea.

How the breakers crash

against the underpinnings;

still, the walls hold firm.

Hearth blazing steadily,

she tries to warm to it

tells herself

she is mature now,

this is good.

The days of stalking,

done,

the rabid pulse,

the blood-drenched kisses,

all behind her now.

Wearied, finally,

of careless cruelties,

she will stay here,

grow old

with you.

And, sensible,

lacking her gift

for self-deception,

you know she struggles

with devotion,

you listen as she

moans inside her dreams,

and watch, without remarking,

as she tracks the tap of high heels

just beyond the window,

their rhythm growing fainter

with each step.

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