Busy Mind #22

Midnight’s End

A small crimson velvet pouch

With jewelry from his mother

His only connection to her

He opens it slowly,carefully, apprehensively

His heart pounding inside his chest

Drops of sweat dotting his upper lip

The silent ghost now attempting to speak:

An oval, Art Deco gold locket,

An amethyst ring,

A silver key

His stubby,clumsy fingers stumbling to open the locket

The tiny door to the past flies open

Cradling a curly lock the color of midnight’s end

Holds it to his nose and closes his eyes

Trying to breathe in her spirit

Puts it back in its cradle with utmost care

So as not to disturb the ghost in the grave


Picks up the amethyst ring

Reads the inscription: “Para mi esposa preciosa”

He knows his mother’s language; not the author behind the words

A tear trickles down his left cheek; mixing with nervous sweat

The ornately carved ring-resembles his intricate life

The multifaceted stone-his many faces


Picks up the silver key-it’s not dainty

Something a man would carry

Holds on to it tightly- takes it to the locked chest

Will it open it?

What’s in the chest?

Are all the rumors true?

With knees knocking,stoops down, inserts the silver key

It slides in,finding its long lost home

He opens the cedar chest

A scent of tobacco and Chanel No. 5 escape

At the bottom of the chest, a hand written note

A woman’s dainty cursive rests on yellowed,wrinkled stationary:

A rose in pre-bloom

But that time did not  wither

A Promise of love

A love that wasn’t-but that still lives on.


Her picture falls out,he flips it over

A bloody finger print stamped in back

Are the rumors true?

Did she suffer violence?

Is the finger print hers?

Or does it belong to her killer?

Too many damned clues-waiting to be solved

He puts it all back

Curiosity has vanished like a mist into the pre-dawn

Stuffs her picture-a young woman with a pained smile

in his coat pocket,next to his heart

Leaves the mystery in the chest

Reads the note-eulogizing her.

Closes the chest

Walks away

Never looking back

EVA SANTIAGO copyright 2013



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