Bitter words. Harsh words.
Drove them away from each other.
His side of the bed, empty for weeks
A grandson’s laughter brought them back
To ground zero. Where they could talk
And reason with one another.
An evening out, at the big screen movies.
Cars crashing, popcorn and coke, bullets smashing
Into bone. Not as bad as a broken heart.
The armrest between their theater seats
Kept their bodies apart, but let their hands
Wander over each other’s knee. Touching.
Driving her home to their one-time place
Over the bridge that crossed the bay
Devils cannot cross the water or follow them home
He hoped she’d ask him if he would spend the night
Maybe they could help each other make it through
And come into the morning light with understanding.
Routines and rhythms of old married partners
Stay the same even in new and uncharted territory.
She readied for bed, same as before, eager for him
He turned down the bed, stashed his clothes
Turned down the lights and turned up the blues
Things would be warm if not downright hot
Habits and motions that are just plain routine
Laid his eyeglasses upon nightstand at his side of the bed
Familiar and exciting to slip between sheets, wait for her.
The sheets were not flat or crisp like new
But, wrinkled and rumpled, creased by body weight
Pillows crushed by another man’s head.