Unhinged he looked at her.
Clenched jaw working like a throbbing naked heart
she scrubbed the carrot till its
flesh glistened raw,
stripped of bitter gritty skin,
then slammed it down
took up the knife
and slashed the thing into a dozen startled discs.
“She’ll get her finger,” he thought
amazed as always at the violence of her silence.
His mind gaped open
what done? not done?
then closed again, outspent.
One hand crept out
and fingers tip-toed on her sleeve.
She jerked away—
then instantly contrite
turned back to see his altered eyes.
Self-loathing buttressed her perversity
and yet transposed the rage.
Thick-skinned? percipient? or suddenly moved by
some primeval instinct known to male alone
again he reached and touched.
then yielding more to marriage than to man
she moved into his arms
and reaching high
placed hers about his neck.
And forgetting in a breath
the heaviness of the still-damp blade
now pendent down his back
they moved in rhythmic slow dance
across the time-worn tile.