Woman As Bench

Anna Evans

A man, on a bench, reading a paper.
The man, fat.
The plank seat bowed like a cat,
Shrinking from a coarse touch.
The paper, flat.

Look! It's a woman.
The wrought iron feet are her knees and her knuckles.
But her back's only wooden and see how it buckles.

He's mocking her gently for being unable
To be a companion as well as a table.
He'll leave when he's finished the paper, except
Her back breaks, which he does find surprising.
So he says without apologizing,
You should have been able to take that.
The paper, crumpled.

Copyright CrossConnect, Inc. 1996