Waiting for a Bus to the Cloisters Museum

Carolyn Martin

She rushes down the brownstone steps
and asks me to zip up her floral dress
since her husband’s still asleep and she’s late
for brunch with friends whose spouses bore
them to the brink of death she says
as she pulls her hair off her neck so I can trace
the curve of her back past a half-slip’s waist
over the bra that defies gravity
to pearls announcing elegance
and I’m embarrassed by a brush
with faultless skin as my nun’s short veil tangles
with the wind from buses zipping by
and when she says without judgment
or dismay You’re a rarity it’s true –
a stranger dressed in black appearing
just in time via Providence or Chance –
and she slides into a cab­ leaving me
bemused by her epiphany and eager
to contemplate seven storied tapestries.

From associate professor of English to management trainer to retiree, Carolyn Martin has journeyed from New Jersey through California to Oregon to discover Douglas firs, months of rain, and dry summers. Her poems and book reviews have appeared in publications throughout North America and the UK and her fourth collection, A Penchant for Masquerades, is scheduled for an early 2019 release from Unsolicited Press. She is currently the poetry editor of Kosmos Quarterly: journal of global transformation. Find out more about Carolyn at www.carolynmartinpoet.com.