Glass of Water Encounter

By Terese Svoboda Terese Svoboda
She dances only in her necklace,
scotch-lit surely. He touches his glasses.

Nightie-less, dugs whipping, hair sprung,
some music inside, out, wet tongue

tip at her lip, no mere palsied shuffle,
both bony feet lifted, elbows awful.

Shakespeare’s banshee of wailing parts,
a woman with hair, a woman with warts.

He’s fixed to the floor. Dear Heloise:
do other presumed-sane mothers do this—

wait in the dark after the ball
to strip for their sons at the end of the hall?

A dream, insists his sister
but his first wife knows better.

Source: Poetry (October 2009).


This poem originally appeared in the October 2009 issue of Poetry magazine

October 2009
 Terese  Svoboda


Terese Svoboda’s latest collection of poems is When the Next Big War Blows Down the Valley: Selected & New (Anhinga Press, 2015). 

Continue reading this biography

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Parenthood, Relationships, Family & Ancestors

Poetic Terms Couplet

Report a problem with this poem

Your results will be limited to content that appeared in Poetry magazine.

Search Every Issue of Poetry

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.