Poetry By Chuck



Missing image
When I finally left the restaurant it was late.  She didn't call or show up.  After watching the sparkling wine fade, I lifted one finger and pushed the glass over.  The spill stained the table cloth and spread rapidly.   Its smell was tart and tangy.  Still I sat and watched the room empty of feelings and abandoned in presences.  

She had promised so much given so little and changed in the space of a heartbeat her often expressed needs and desires.   By phone, by Internet she communicated herself well and captured my attention with willingness.

I'm surprised and hurt that she didn't show.   It seemed such a good idea to me.  Just a glass of wine, no commitment ... you know.  Such was not then nor now my intention.  

The stain has darkened the cloth.  The wine has stopped dripping to the floor now.  The pungent smell causes me to almost sicken, but I realize its tension that I feel.   I'm gripping the edge of the table with one hand.  The knuckles are white with strain.   I feel nothing however and it takes a certain amount of concentration to let go.

My suit has slightly wrinkled in the chair.  I've not eaten despite the late hour.   I can hear my stomach grumbling at my stupidity and passing a queasy wave at my poor judgement.

The waiter has long stopped coming.  Three hours now I've sat and patently waited.   I would sit the rest of the night if needed, if demanded, if it would only conclude otherwise.  

But it won't.

I rise and walk towards the door.  Stopping at the last step to glance back.  The spilled wine reflects against the overhead lights and reflects my wasted time.  

Without a word I drop a hundred on the counter as I leave.  Not even glancing at the proferred bill.

In the rain, I walk to my car.  Parked in the lot, alone.  Like me.  In the rain I stand solitary in my thoughts and wondering at how mistaken I could be.  Now, I find myself soaked through and removed the steamed glasses from my nose.  

I'm not sure if I dropped them or not.  I took off my tie and dropped it.  I removed my coat and let it fall.  I pulled off my shirt and it soon joined the coat.  Then bare chested in the rain, I let my gaze fall.  

I kicked off my shoes and undid my pants.  Then the trousers followed.  I kicked them away in the dark and stood in my underwear.  

I wanted no part of the evenings plans, now displayed in the soaked garments.   I could tolerate them no more.

Without a backward glance I unlocked the car and then opened the door.  But, as I was leaning to enter it... I heard approaching footsteps.

I stood in quiet acceptance of my unknown fate.   It could easily be a cop instead of my date.  The steps stopped next to me.

She softly said my name.   Almost a whisper in the rain.   I closed my eyes in mental pain.  She told me ...she felt she had nothing to gain....

...and was hoping I had already departed.  

It was then I realized.....
I already have....

Author notes

Written November 4th, 2004


  • Touchof1der Moderators member
    November 6, 2004
    Okay... Duh!! Thank you for explaining it to me.

  • Chuck Johnson silver member
    November 6, 2004
    When you discard the layers of soiled linen, as you peel those layers off, when each is removed from your skin, it reflects the love you lost. Each is a layer of love, a artificial skin that when it meets the light of day... there it ends. Only love can dress the wounds.

  • Touchof1der Moderators member
    November 6, 2004
    This is very, very sad. I am glad this isn't totally a true depiction of an actual date. I am sure you would fare better in a real life situation. Curiosity always gets the best of me... what was the purpose of stripping down to your underwearin the rain and did you leave your clothes thereon the ground? I am sure that was metaphoric for something because of the way you think... I am just not sure what it is.
    I know... I'm nosey! 

  • wishintreeUK
    November 4, 2004

    Good expressive poem

    This is so very, very sad, I do wish that the footsteps that you heard at the end, had been other than what they were.... the final dart of pain in the chest! You deserve much better! Your graphic lent much to your poem in that you used subject matter from it in your write ... the tipped over glass, the stained tablecloth. The image of the one glass left standing has to be you... you can stand tall, you kept the appointment, showing an interest in the one you were about to meet... the tipped up glass in my mind, represents the lady who had not the good grace to at least keep the appointment, that she turned up very, very late and the comment she made, bodes no positive outcome for anyone she would feel inclined to spend the rest of her life with.
    Well written Chuck.