VALENTINE'S DAY AT THE LAUNDROMAT
TV flickers; machines whir,
stubborn stains persist.
I smooth and fold towels into thirds
while Alex fondles Dmitri.
Firelight frames the lovers.
Hot lips brush her nape, her shoulders.
Humming extractor muffles distractions.
Luke enters, bringing a blast of cool air.
He smiles crookedly,
gazes with cow eyes, takes my hand.
Half-struggling against his embrace,
I retreat toward the dryers.
Bony pelvis pins me against a machine.
I collapse into his arms;
husband, kids, and mortgage
washed away in the heat of the encounter.
Buttons and zippers fly in furious passion.
Luke's lips soak my throat and cleavage.
I watch, slit-eyed, as his head
sinks out of camera range,
brain spinning in tandem with machines.
Buzz! buzz! again and again!
The extractor signals "finished"
Normal breathing returns.
Damp clothes replace moist bodies.
I am alone again in the laundromat
while the rest of the world is getting it on.