Soccer season is back on for the children. They've been doing it a long while, each year at a local church league that I like because it's less pressure. The children can either excel or chase butterflies and either way, they'll get hints on how to improve and a trophy at the end of the season. The place swarms with smiling parents and red-faced girls and boys, the place oozes a perfect cover, leaving me to wonder about underlying secrets. This series of poetic efforts came out of a single moment of observation of a man and woman, unrelated, giving each other a subtle glance before blending into the sea of flawless families.
Chocolate donuts, sprinkled, glazed,
Black coffee, creamer, sugar,
Pretzel twists in a bag.
Fifty cents in my sweaty palm,
As I see you.
Goatee, salt and peppered,
Hazel eyes looking directly at me,
You make me blush.
"Large coffee," your voice hits me,
A kick of the ball to the chest.
Wedding ring glimmers
In a ten o'clock sun.
Gold shoved into the pocket of my jeans,
Hidden like another bit of lint.
"Anything else?" I ask.
I know what I want.
You say nothing at first,
Shaking your head and grinning knowingly.
"A goal for the team would be good," you say at last.
"One for the team. Here's change."
You walk away.
Stop an errant soccer ball,
Throw it back in play.
Trembling hands, eager mouths, wetness.
An empty coke can rolls along the floor.
A break in the game,
Sounded by a whistle.
"I gotta get back," I pant.
Sticky skin rubs against mine.
I gasp - we gasp,
As I'm pinned against the wall.
"Stay to left! Go, go, go!!"
Water from a leaky pipe puddles beneath us,
We splash unconsciously.
"Goalie! Get it, get it, get it! YES!"
Slick fingers pressed into my mouth,
I taste myself.
The door ... someone's at the door.
Hurry now, hurry.
"Aztecs versus Fusion"
Squinting, I watch the swarm
Zig-zag between guarded nets.
The ball leads, pushes, pulls,
My eyes tire at the work.
Such blind sweet love.
Metal bleachers absorb the sun,
Too hot beneath me.
Lemonade-filled cup sweats beads of icy water,
not enough to cool me as I rub it across my cheek.
One goal, two. A tie.
The hour nears its close.
You lean forward,
An excuse to touch.
I don’t know your name,
I like the anonymity.
I hope to keep it that way.
I know it won’t last.
The heat is endless, isn’t it?