Rue and Wonder

The bell chimes and she’s there on the front stoop
gold cuffs glinting, eyes like ice chips
and she says, You know why I’m here

and I do. I’ve been resting, laying low,
I tell her, but no excuse will fly. She glances
at my baggy dress, twee plates on the wall

and says nothing, but I know full well
what she’s thinking. The thing is, I’ve never
been so large before. Oddly that’s the part

that makes her both glad and sad,
since all those years I stayed so small,
getting by on as little as I could, a wonder

this woman I am now survived at all.
Why aren’t you out there in the fray? she doesn’t ask,
but I hear the question anyway. Then she spins

and her street clothes reappear, glasses in place
to dull the lancet gaze that could spear
and kill any mere mortal. Yet I still stand here

unscathed, watching her stride across the lawn
off to wherever she’s going next, circling
my own wrist with my fingers, rubbing

the new hardness I find there with rue and wonder.

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