by James B. Nicola

Since money was involved, I look beyond
the ramparts of your eyes and think I see
a glimmer, wonder if it’s treachery
behind the smile, and watch how you respond.

I know you know what you have done--betrayed,
deceived, or not--as I know what I’ve done.
We cover, passing figures, having fun,
half-placing wagers till the hands are played

or one is touched with a surprising wink
which breaches castle walls with cracks of trust.
We brace or bank as we see fit and think
there’s value in a sudden burst of laughter.
And what we know we must not do, we must
and do; the damage, tally, maybe, after.

© 2009 by James B. Nicola



About the Author

James B. Nicola has been published in a score of journals, over fifty poems so far. A stage director by profession, his book Playing the Audience won a Choice Award.


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