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Rated: E · Poetry · Emotional · #2072605
winter cup
Prompt for: Jan 21, 2016 (Fyn)
Subject or Theme: You are in an antique store. Describe what you see while wandering around. What catches your fancy? Why? How does it make you feel? What thoughts come to mind as to where it came from or who might have owned it? What would you do with it?

Word(s) to Include: patina, ambrosia, cobweb (or any derivatives of these words)
Forbidden Word(s): it, antique, old, history, like (or any derivatives, compound or hyphenations of these words)
Additional Parameters: Must be 24 lines. Make sure your object is highlighted in green. Remember, do not use forbidden words ANYWHERE, including title or title or the brief description.


The weathered sign swung from rusted links,
a waving hello, a beckoning into
Trinkets, Trash and Treasures.
Unable to resist thrown lure, I venture in.

Samovar displayed on tatted lace
gleams near tarnished spoons and
fine bone china cups covered
in violets or cabbage roses.
An aisle over a large bronze bowl
held by toga-draped marble maidens
is filled with potpourri. Spices
from Mandalay, desiccated flower petals,
cinnamon sticks and vanilla beans
scent ambrosia.

Farther in, a haphazard pile
of embossed, leather-bound books
invites perusal
of gilt-edged pages whisper thin.
Brass birdcage holds not a bird, but
a gauzy-winged sprite with sapphire eyes
perched on motionless swing.
A display of cameras, circa 1870,
sits on layered black and white photos
of now nameless women clothed
in dark, long dresses:standing stiffly, looking stern.
Wicker baskets with braided handles hang
overhead along with wheat flails, blackened steel scythes,
and a Flexible Flyer sled.

In a cobwebbed back corner
something glints, sparkles beneath
patina of silvered dust.
Gold-leaf framed oil painting of winsome child
with pink parasol and King Charles Spaniel.
Multi-tiered chandelier with crystal prisms
scatters rainbows to dance on worn wooden floor.
Meander passes stereopticon with twin sepia-toned slides
of muddied roads and Model Ts. Early 3-D ooze.

Long-haired tortoise-shell cat stretches then stalks
over to wind between my legs, arching up against
hand smoothing down her back. She purrs, nudges,
and then lies down in a stray sunbeam
to carefully wash her tail.

Hanging rack of frayed hand-pieced quilts,
amalgamations of worn out lives
serving to continue to warm.
Double wedding-ring quilt; each intertwined ring
comprised of bride and groom's discarded childhood,
threaded by women in social circles circling round
the gossip of the day.

Maple shelf crowded with porcelain dolls;
rosy cheeked with high button shoes and elegant gowns
snuggled next to straw-filled bear
with hanging-by-a-thread button eyes.
Sterling silvered tray engraved with fleur de lis
serves as home for cloisonné turtles, camel and a jaunty frog.
Canted to the side sits Civil War era
hump-backed steamer trunk,
lid lifted to show vintage embroidered jacket,
felt hat with peacock feathered plume and
pearl-encrusted gown with fingertip sleeves
and handkerchief hem.

Mirrored tray in a dry sink bubbles with baubles
from gone-by day: marcasite drop earrings,
filigreed necklaces, rose and cream cameo pin.
Plain, simple, thin, white gold wedding band waits silently.
Inside, script initials, K & R, an apostrophized '08
and a single word: Stick.

Which '08, I ponder, this mysterious K and R.
The simple word to encompass all they were,
all they would be til death departed with half
of the whole, leaving one alone.
Absently, I slide the ring on my third finger
to find a perfect fit. We are an R and a K.
My fussy rings left at home on the spoon rack, placed
so they shouldn't get lost, placed
safe from Monday night meatloaf makings.

At the counter I ask the price,
but the answer is moot.
The white-haired and bespectacled proprietor
smiles beneath his oversized mustache.
"Attached to the ring, are you?" he asks.
"Pretty much stuck," I answer,
twisting the ring that will not come off.
'The ring is yours then, on me," he says
turning to answer the nearby ringing phone,
cutting off any reply or rebuttal.

In the bright sun, out on the sidewalk,
I turn to look once more before continuing on my way.
Peeling paint, mottled windows, two limp chains hang
holding no pretty sign. Empty shelves, a fallen step stool
are all that I see in the shadows. I look down
at the silver circle, a symbol of all he and I are.
I smile and head home to share a tale of rings
and sticks and shared glue.

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