"Take off those masculine airs, I'd like
to see you a moment in my study."
Her coiled muscles and weathered eyes mistook
for the omens of an upwardly-mobile lunge
at morning-after dithering.
Too often used to blatant,
armored for the barrage, hard to pierce
by anything less than brazen begging;
her softer plea he tucked in a bundle,
Roses, three short a dozen
because she couldn't afford more,
laid askew before the door,
inscribed "I miss you" to
an empty room.