A story is commuted,
In unusual company,
Of a forgotten briefcase.
Day in and out and every day
Underarm tweed jacket
In hand ironed shirt cuffs.
Close to him as to
A Cold War courier’s wrist
Attache chained at the checkpoint.
Three tumblers ready set,
Contents always undisclosed,
Purpose firm, certain, and obscure.
Vital papers, fretted
Evidence of indiscresions,
Speculated short lists of intent?
Another life, another plan?
Another woman, another man?
What, what, what secrets kept so close?
At last opportunity is unveiled
A moment of absence appears,
Combination still unset.
Rapid glances doorward,
She’s got to, got to, has to know.
Quick, quick, look, look, look!
Her breath short before the prize,
The leather lipped steel maw now
Yawned apart in nervous grip.
Examinations yet to come?
Secret stash, shocking contraband?
Handcuffs, stockings, sex toys?
A horde of one brace alone –
Two treasures not for sharing
This and that, now at last in reach.
This – old-school stacked in greaseproof,
Not clicked in Tupperware, two pieces,
Diagonally cut. Both cheese and ham.
What else, what covert condiment,
To accompany solo sustenance,
To be kept so three digit close?
Noises off summon immanence,
Hurry, hurry, heart pump, pump, chest
Thump, thrill tight, breath, breath, breathe!
So now, more than slightly aroused, by
The urgency of possible sudden
Capture in larceny delicto, she sees
That – only quick fumble glimpsed, then
Restored, recased, reclasped, away.
Well thumbed. Cover clear. Triang Hornby.
Tidy tiny cosmoses, self contained at HO scale,
Or less, entropy-safe in careful Humbrols,
Worlds within a world. World without end.