The Couple

by Alter Esselin

Alter Esselin

Moonlight silent they appear,
The two teenagers.
Lovesick and distraught,
They shove the garbage pails aside
Sit down on the bench
And embrace,
Eyes shining in the dark.

I see them through their voices,
Feel them through the windowpane.
She sits on his lap and weeps---
A muffled flute.
"My father doesn't know. He drinks.
My stepmother knows and beats me.
Calls me a slut.
I get dizzy when I stoop.
I can't sleep.
I 'm sick all the time."

She puts his hand on her belly.
"Feel how big.
A chocolate doll is dancing there,
Honey sweet as you.
Pete, what will we do with the doll
When I get out of the hospital?"

Last updated June 30, 2015