He walks ahead of her now
as if the bond between them
has been stretched
like the elastic band
on the yellowed white slip
that still sits in the back of her drawer;
the slip she wore on the day
he married her.
Back then they were inseparable,
held hands as they walked,
whispered and giggled until dawn,
dipped strawberries in chocolate
and fed them to each other,
took long drives along the canal
listening to the frogs and crickets
by the light of the moon.
He craved the smell
of her freshly washed tousle of hair.
She loved the thrill she felt in his arms.
Like the undergarment
she hangs onto without reason
and its hopeless misshapen waist
their journey asunder was invisible.
a downturn in the business,
and exhausted nights
with two teenagers,
his way versus hers,
both needing to be right.
Their complacency and arrogant
assumption of forever
breaking down the fibers and
the tightness of their bond.
At home the cars have been serviced,
the yard freshly mowed and
the house has a new coat of paint,
but he walks ahead of her now
and she speaks to him
with contempt in her voice
and he answers her in grunts;
but they are neither able to let go
of the flaccid fiber that binds them
nor fortify its strength
with any more certainty
than she can mend or toss that worn out slip.