Man Woman Woman Man

she watched the toast turn brown in the oven, but her mind is elsewhere

she figured he stopped loving her

the moment he’d rather put his mouth on cigarette sticks

than her own lips.

so here she is, the woman, walking with a chip on her shoulder.

at night she clutches at her pillow, making herself believe it is her lover.

she numbs herself of everything: Feeling and thought,

she is okay for the meantime.

in the morning she absentmindedly stirs her lousy tea,

“in a matter of time he would slip from my mind,” she assured herself,

but his name is still bitter on her tongue.

the name that she seeks cannot hold her anymore,

he is not waiting for her embrace.

she preens in front of the mirror, but really, she is just pruning her self-respect.

in the presence of the man–the beast–she finds her knees gelatinous once again.

always on her toes, always weak in the knees, always soft, always crumbling for him. 

she is his through and through: His voluntary throwaway

yet he is only hers for the meantime

hers, but not really.

the woman disintegrates effortlessly,

but even she is not as crisp as toast.

rather dry, the woman is week-old bread,

stale enough for the fungi to grow on her,

turn her to scum,

and reduce her to something, anything, lower than filth

until she loses herself completely and ceases

to exist.

 

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