--reflecting on a painting, ‘False Security’, by Heater Busch
Married yesterday; today turn off the oven.
Walk across town, revoke your vow.
But on Sunday, the Registry light were out.
She advised herself to wait and see.
Two houses later, his books, her trinkets
remained in cargo cases, the mortgage unpaid.
She waited to see. She pondered the sale
of a leadlight window, a basement copper,
iron lace, the blue tile surround, the solitaire.
‘Forget it,’ he said. ‘The ring is yours.’
G & T Young Jewellers offered
four one-hundred-pound notes,
the Queen’s portrait printed in red
Custom built shelves held all his books;
a crystal cabinet secured her bone-
china teacups, an angel, a brass bell.
Each day, she arranged her treasures,
cleaned the glass, polished cabinet legs,
as shapely as hers. Supported within,
knees drawn up, one eye peered through
a diamond centred in the leadlight door.
Still she waited to see but overlooked
her keepsakes on the carpet below:
cat eyes to see in the dark, blind;
arms, feathered wings to lift, deflated;
wolf feet for swiftness wasted, lie prone.