Her door’s open. She’s on her way downstairs.
You can hear the river from here, thunder
brings the sound up close to the shore.
You hear a groan like lightning striking flesh.
He knows another john’s satisfaction
is complete. But not his. Not yet.
She sees him and he smiles and she wiggles
her forefinger motioning him up to where
she stands. He follows her back up the stairs,
where she sucks his cock and puts it between
her legs and on her back she rocks him back
and forth and he catches fire and flames out
into her pussy all that's in him, his cock sore
from all her trouble. Belle, he says. Yes, Frank?
The talk begins, what she has too little time for.
She says he can stay here. Until she next man,
he knows she means, but he’s bound to say no,
he needs to keep his self-respect.
He staggers downstairs and stumbles on home.
It’s home where he wants to go,
not the hotel room on Garrison Avenue,
where he sleeps between fucks and works
sweeping up after hours in the local saloons
owned by Pearl’s brother Tom, who takes pity
on his sister’s drunken, debauched husband
and pays Frank money he knows goes nowhere
but down by the river. Money spills there
following the lure of the forbidden.
Gravity’s law. Tom knows better. His saloons thrive.
Tom Taylor’s one of the richest men in Fort Smith.
He wants a son. He pays close attention
to the rotogravure, the social page.
He’s looking for a wife. The Times-Record
does not interest Tom otherwise.
Having money is more than father John
could muster. His mother Matilda Satterfield
employed her Scots talent for thrift and taught
Tom a lesson his father learned to hate:
If the city is for making money,
the country exists for endless labor.
(9 October 2012)
copyright 2012 by Floyce Alexander