The Dance

Kelly Grace Thomas

 

In a Nighthawk coffee-ringed diner

they sat, opposite sides, chewing a mouthful of metaphors.

A 2am goodbye cut into tiny pieces.

He would miss the way her purple dress danced like a carousal, around her hips,

the way her eyes were always waiting to speak.

I love you, you must know that, he sighed.

Seven words, one sentence. Two lies.

 

Her pancakes, maple-syruped sponges in a buttered graveyard of things

she swore she would never do again.

She emptied another sugar packet onto the table,

its crystals running away until dewdrops from her straw

dissolved them into disappearance.

It’s never going to stop raining, she said.

He remembered pushing her on the swings, near the deserted beach,

where tourists used to eat watermelon before gangs graffitied their namesake.

The midnight a blue, broken repentance

She laughed, her breath a ghost in the chilled night air.

 

A fluorescent bulb flicker rushed the paranoid pauses

The coffee drip, drip, dripping like the second hand of a clock.

Never, she repeated.

She grabbed her coat, and walked to the door.

He asked for the check

as the sugar melted.