“Black Tights, A Halter Top” by Carol Frith

Carol Frith


She’s waiting near the corner of Monroe
and Pierce: spike heels, black tights, a halter top,
her image coding sunlight. Who will stop,
eclipse this smolder that is burning slow
as incense on the walk? Is she a pro?
Perhaps, although a slowly cruising cop
on Pierce ignores her. Her cigarette’s a prop.
She never takes a drag—a cameo
against the sun, her small face smiling at
whatever thing it is might fill her needs.
Two sparrows? The donut shop across the street?
At her back, an oak. The light is flat.
Pinned to the tree, a ragged sign that reads:
For sale. Persimmons, firm to the touch, and sweet.

from Rattle #32, Winter 2009
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