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Love at First Sight
by Elayne Clift

She sees him on the station platform,
Waiting for the Brooklyn express,
His worn corduroys and seen-better-days
Shirt just right with classy flip-flops and
A red backpack slung across his shoulder.

She likes his bald head, an Oedipal thing,
Wants to touch his olive skin and look
More deeply into his onyx eyes.
They lock looks and wordlessly
Wait for the next, less crowded train.
Midnight subways can be such magic places.

They sit one vacant seat apart. Heart thumping,
She takes a business card from her purse.
Somehow she will hand it to him.
"In case you need this," she will say,
Praying instead that he acts first.

She exits the train while he travels
Perhaps one station more. So close,
Yet so terribly, irrevocably gone.
Then, with all the grief a heart can hold,
She bids silent farewell to the love of her life,
And like so many before her,
Morphs into the needy, self-deprecating,
Cautious coward love makes of us all.


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