A Late Supper but a Perfect View
by Willow Rose
A stray dust mote captured
and turned to gold, as if by alchemy;
how it blazed– so bright, so brief
caught in the rays of the setting sun.
She gazed through the open door,
distracted for a moment by the river;
A spangled snood holding back the grey
then a last gleam of gold,
as if the clock chimed midnight,
and some fairy tale princess was spirited away.
How Virginia loved this cottage! The cheery kitchen,
her vegetable garden out back. The flamenco dance
of color from the fragrant flowers; passersby would point,
those that knew what she was best known for;
what she grew best; never noticing her mis-matched shoes,
the button missed, the stocking torn, her haunted eyes,lids
dark and heavy with her need to rest.
The water on its second boil, Virginia Woolf bustled about;
choosing six carrots still clumped with clots of earth,
the smooth potatoes, rinsing, and slicing; onion and garlic
mingling—-bleeding the pungent essence already wafting
from her hands.
Just a woman preparing a dinner she will not eat;
aromatic, cheery kitchen and homemade stew,
what a scene of domestic bliss
for a husband to walk into.
Hanging her apron on its old hook,
She smooths the folds of her skirt and bends down–
picks up a piece of straw as if it matters now.
Moments later, clad in her old, shabby cloak;
She blends into the dusk, cool and gray now.
A ferryman passes, she has her fare and she takes
her first steps into the Thames, feeling the the water swirling,
mud sucking at the soles of her shoes. Or souls she thinks
smiling-then a chuckle-and the shore is distant now.
The chill pushes a breath out with one bony hand.
Too late to turn back,
weighed down by everything and nothing.
She slips silent as a secret, pockets full of heavy stones,
large and smooth and rounded
as the potatoes bubbling merrily away in the stew left behind;
fragrant, orderly, and dark now
in an empty kitchen.
©Willow Rose 2011