Eyes Wide Open

I stood behind her in the check out line. Peering. There was something about her. Vaguely familiar. Her jacket open with another underneath. To keep her warm? Why did she not just zip up the outer one? Her scent a mix of vanilla and lavender. She was pretty in a sweet way. The wife was nattering in my ear. I paid her half attention wondering about the young woman in front of us. Ran a critical eye over her purchases. Eggs. Pepsi. Pizza. Hmmmmmmmmm…….
I eyed the groceries I had piled on the belt. ‘Hey the first few items are the must haves…..after that we will see’……Nervously I watched the total add up. I had received an unexpected boon today which allowed me to shop for some items to tide us over until payday. Princess looked at me eyebrows furrowed in question. ‘Kay the pizzas. Cream.’ She looks over at me and pointedly at the pepsi I am buying. It came down to personal items (toothpaste/shampoo/vitamins etc) or extras for the kids lunches. Princess flippantly looks over items and in a throw away voice ‘healthy or beauty?’ I cringed having to say this. Furtively I glanced at the customer behind me. Hoping he would not recognize me. ‘Bars. Buy one get one at least have snack for first part of week.’
I zoned in suddenly. Caught the end of the conversation. That voice. Took a moment to cycle through and realized it was our regular cashier. Always cheerful. Smile on her lips. Asked after the family. Teased and laughed with me.Not someone I would have thought would have to make such a decision. I guess I had never really thought about what it must be like for her outside of the service she provided for me. For my wife. My family. Her cheeks reddened as she peeped from beneath shawl of hair. Realized she was checking to see if I had recognized her. Turned away and pretended that I was listening to the wife.
Oh thank goodness he did not recognize me. Benefit of having such long hair. When it is down most do not see me. Princess handed me the bars and I bagged them. Handed her my rewards card hoping there was something I could redeem. Add at least one of the extras but not yet. Shrugged and paid. Ducked my head so that my hair fell forward covering my face. Beyond Princess no one realized I had been there. I calculated what I had spent and yeah so the pepsi is not a must have but a little something as a treat. Not only for me.
I watched as she walked away. Saw her head swiveling subtly back and forth eyes gauging cataloging the people around her. She did not acknowledge anyone with raised voice or hand. She moved quickly neatly between the people blocking her exit. Realizing as she zipped through none saw her a ghost within their midst.
Thank god I got out without anyone seeing me. Hard to explain how money is something you need to count to the penny. Proud asking for no help because you can do it. And it is no one’s business learn to live in your means tighten your belt voice roaring in your head bow beneath the onslaught. Load the groceries into the back of the car pushing the cart back to the pick up area brace self against the sudden gust of rain washing over me baptismal flood slid behind the wheel. Windows fogged as I steam.
I watched standing at the cart corral as she puts her car into drive pulling into traffic. What I was seeing did not reconcile with the picture I had of her. Granted I only thought of her for the maybe 10 minutes a week I saw her. Never beyond but this is not what I had imagined. Kinda like a cartoon that does not end just because the scene has. Suddenly confronted with the bias of my thoughts. Middle class as they were. Laughing because I had been so sure she was middle class too.
I saw him standing watching as I pulled from my parking space. Rain dousing him until he became a blob in the rear view mirror. He knew now. How was I ever to meet his eyes? Poverty is not a sin…..yet we still feel as though it is. 
Jan. 3 2020
Picture via Pinterest

Sacrifice I must

This cannot be real.
this cannot be true 
allow me to awaken
from this nightmare.
Pull in close
lock the door
bar the windows
love lives here no more.
Not even willing
not even a chance
that I am willing
to allow myself to live
to allow myself to love
pain
too much to take
burned one too many times.
She blew in during the night
sashaying
hips swaying
lust first filled my veins
I opened the door to let her in.
Talk
talk
talk
I could listen to her forever
her hopes
her dreams
her needs
her desires
suddenly…..
There was…..
there is no turning back.
She has wormed her way under my skin
becoming an oasis
a warm shelter
that I crave
even as I push her away.
This cannot be real.
This cannot be true.
Even as I watch her walk away
I feel her pain.
She walks on
with nary a glance back
so I see not her tears.
She shall never know
my heart rended
I know this is what I must do.
For her.
 
©Nov. 26/19
Picture via Pinterest

Shifted Reality

Clouded prisms
latticed in gold
eyes shut
blindfold
tempting the fate
staring forward
no justice
no truth
no unchanged reality.
Thought I was crazy
all will tell you I am insane
no one seems to realize
the tiny things
the blips where time is changed
I can see them
even if you cannot.
With each time encroachment
dissolved objections
dissolved investigations
anything that benefit the rich
applied in an instant
while the rest of us
we are bled dry.
I cried.
I screamed.
I tried so hard to make all see
to no avail.
Paranoia
knew I was being followed
knew if not careful I would disappear
left messages
small notes for friends
I knew though time was coming
it was near
something would be done
to silence my fears.
Groovy idea for a novel.
Total science fiction.
Bewildered I look around
at the group before me
my mind reeling.
Standing
I turn around
not sure what time I am in.

©Nov. 24/19
Picture via Pinterest

Word of the Day Challenge #72-Untitled Poem

Cup my cheek
tender hand
caress the curve of my lip
stare
deep into my eyes
capturing me
mesmerizing me
causing me to feel
emotions I have thought dead.
Break through the barrier
the one I have erected
after so much torment and fear.
Never had much thought
for what a man could do
other then hurt me
as my history does prove.
Tears
enough have been cried
to fill
rivers
lakes
oceans
to cover the arid lands
you wipe away
with gentle words.
Touch me close
hold me near
my heart
my soul
yours to keep
or ransom back to me
with pain and heartache.

©Nov. 14/19
Picture via PInterest

Flight of Furies

Walk the halls
head kept down
ignoring the reflected images.
Taunting
each one a different facet
a different aspect of me.
One screams
silent in her terror
eyes wide
hands held out to shield
ward off
dangers coming at all sides.
One watches
bleeding black eyes
lips disappearing into a rictus smile
resigned
forgotten
leans through the frame
reaching for me.
One rages
fire
flame
destruction flies from fingertips
never calmed
never quieted
even as tears gather in my eyes.
End of the line.
No where for me to run.
No where for me to hide.
Steps falter
as I look up
seeing images of me
dancing in the prisms of the mirror.
One
two
three
stop looking at me.
Three
four
five
spy the missile on the ground.
Six
seven
eight
stand up straight.
Nine
ten
let fly
shattering the images
glass spewing around
down on me
as each aspect
black
grey
red
stream towards me
even as I flee.
©Oct. 22/19
Picture via Pinterest

Word of the Day Challenge #68-Untitled Poem

Tears shimmer
unshed
gathered in the corner
salt slick cheek
turn away
hide my face.
I do not want to end this.
I do not want to cause this.
Pretend you see not
pretend you feel not
that way it does not hurt as much
when you push me away.
Words roil around
burning my tongue
black vomit
coating
invading
my inner self
turning to bruise
turning to hatred
ever time you look at me.
You broke me open
you forced me to examine
to see
to realize
the truth at the core of me
the truth that allowed my soul
my dreams
my needs
to finally be seen…..
be acknowledged…..
be accepted.
Voices raised
vicious vitriol
know how to tear
used in a war
neither of us can bear.
Sorrow
bleak
crushing
blinding us to the truth
we justify
our loneliness
because to actually admit
to actually say
my heart is yours darling
please do hold with care
is harder to do
then to force you away.

©Oct. 15/19
Picture is my own

Word of the Day Challenge #67-Untitled Poem

I am afraid.
None would think
to look at me
that there could reside
in my being
a fear so deep
a fear so intense
it causes me to overthink
to over analyze
with no definitive answer.
When the words cease to whisper
when the lines will not write
dread begins to rise
is it happening again
am I falling down the rabbit hole
unable to see
how much damage I am doing
but I am not
doing damage that is.
I walk the fine line
betwixt
normality
freakiness
murky needs hidden
please
I do not want to fall
I do not want to crawl at your feet.
I fret
I frown
I gnaw on my thoughts
unable to hold them clear
nervous I am
that insanity is calling my name.
Plastered smile
cheers
drink in hand
falling down
let me drown
that is all I am asking.
©Oct. 11/19
Picture via Pinterest