Courting Disaster

By Alexandra Weber

We sit at the old dinner table.
I sip on my glass of wine and smile.
The wood crackles in the open fireplace.
His hand tightens on the knife he holds.
I’m happy here.

Winter came early.
We dress in our warmest coats and scarves.
Snow crunches under our boots.
A couple passes us, laughing.
He takes my hand and grips it tight.

I visit my mother in the spring.
It hurts to see her warm smile.
She hugs me long and tight.
I feel a dampness on my neck as she pulls away.
She’s been crying.

What does it mean to be married?
I twist my wedding ring as I sip my wine.
To be together and in love and happy.
Am I happy?
He gives my shoulder a squeeze.
Yes.

I down a glass of wine before bed.
Another.
The wood creaks as he enters the room.
He undresses; belt first.
I’m happy here.

In the morning I make his coffee.
He thanks me and kisses my forehead.
My nose, my lips.
He hovers over my cheek before pulling away.

Am I happy here?
I keep it to myself.