CCW Finalist, Poetry
Encounters by Marina Romani
1. On a Farm & Market Road in Texas
With the deep night of the road rushing past,
the mind lingers, brooding on conversations
just left behind or those shortly to come.
All thoughts dissolve in our brief encounter:
I face the enormity of terror in the glowing amber
of your open eyes, your young antlers lit briefly
in the headlights, and then the soft thump.
Limping the rest of the way home in my one-eyed Honda,
I see nothing but your amber pools of terror.
2. In a Park in Santa Monica
Ambling at early dusk, the soft green grass underfoot,
indulgent in the idleness of after-dinner chit-chat.
A sudden rush of footsteps, quick thump against my chest,
and then we’re eye to eye, surprised by one another’s fear,
our four hands locked upon a purse strap
in that ancient tug of war, the mindless struggle
to possess a thing.
The strap snaps, I tumble, he’s gone.
It’s over. All but the echo of the footsteps
and the image of my own dark fear
reflected in a stranger’s eyes.