She sits upon the bed,
Staring absently out the open window,
Her dress drawn up above her knees
and nothing else.
It is scarcely a breeze
On this October afternoon.
She thinks –
What is my life worth?
Who cares if I live or die?
Anguish is reflected by the sunlight on her face.
Not half an hour ago.
He was returning to his wife.
She left him no alternative.
He’d never see his children again.
She had him by the short hairs.
He was sorry.
Yes, he remembered the promises he made.
But it couldn’t be helped.
She understood, didn’t she?
Yes, he knew she had left her husband and children
to be with him.
Yes, he knew she couldn’t go back home.
but she would surely think of something.
He had to go.
Mildred was in the car waiting for him.
They were taking the kids and going to Myrtle Beach
for a few days.
“But what about me? she had cried.
“I’m sorry” he said. “I have to go”
and he left.
and so for half an hour she thought of all the parting shots
she could have taken, if she thought of them sooner.
Sandra Lee Smith/originally posted in April, 2009; updated May 29, 2018