Muscadine Lines: A Southern Journal

Steel-Eyed Mistress

Thomas Reynolds


on a picnic in Devonshire
Mississippi
Joe Morgan
ate chicken, and watched the woman
he brought with him
eat potato salad
and while he chewed
he couldn't help but
wonder
had she really slept
when she said she was going to
he meant
when she lay in the sunlight
had her eyes really closed
with sleep
or just cleverness
until he took out his fortune
wrapped in a paper sack
which was the real reason he came
and buried it
so she would know where it was at
and come back when he was gone
and dig it up

not knowing she was the steel-eyed mistress
of an oil tycoon
had he robbed himself
he was thinking
she had
though there didn't seem to be much steel
in the eyes of the woman
wiping potato salad
from her lips
who thereupon said let's take
a walk
moonlight on the river
and as they
kissed each other
he couldn't help thinking
that
maybe out of the corner
of her eye
she'd watched him bury it
beneath the willow tree.

***

THOMAS REYNOLDS teaches at Johnson County Community College in Overland Park, Kansas, and has published poems in various print and online journals, including New Delta Review, Alabama Literary Review, Aethlon-The Journal of Sport Literature, The MacGuffin, Flint Hills Review, Midwest Poetry Review, Potpourri, Ariga, Strange Horizons, Combat, American Western Magazine, and The Pedestal Magazine.

© Thomas Reynolds

Muscadine Lines: A Southern Journal ISSN 1554-8449, Copyright © 2004-2012