MUSED
BellaOnline Literary Review
Creater Lake by Al Rollins

Poetry


A Table for Three

Sue Ellis

Mother bid on a mystery box at auction
and left the withered masking tape
intact on the cardboard seam
until I got home from school.

Large as a washtub,
it smelled faintly of lavender
and the over-heated rafters
of a third story attic.

We imagined old clothes--
dead spiders in the pockets,
each curled dry
like a raveling of black thread
worried into a wad.

Instead we found tablecloths,
buffet scarves and napkins,
clean, starched and pressed.

They unfolded like memories,
pale drifts of color
with satin stitched hems.
A few had meticulous mends--
or the monogram N.W.

We pictured her on laundry day,
pink cheeked--
the ironing board cover
as pristine as the linens--
the shadow of a smile as she recalled
the garden club luncheon
served on dove-colored damask.

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Reader Feedback:
a wonderfully woven tapestry that explores the mystery of a box from the past...loved the imagery and lovely details from start to finish!
~stacey



Summer Solstice 2011 Table of Contents