artwork: ralph murre
The Moroccan Leather Briefcase
by Jackie Langetieg
What I really wanted that day,
handling the soft Moroccan leather,
was to be a person who went to
Egypt, or Kashmir—someplace
where a man in a white flowing burnoose
with black and silver ropes would see I was lost
and offer to lead me back to my people and
on the way, we stop at a dark café, sip
strong coffee poured from a long-handled carafe
into small brass cups filigreed with whirls
of romantic Arabic, and tell each other our mysteries.
His robes flow over his body. His
lean brown fingers stroke my hand; I quiver
as desire pools in my belly. His neat black beard raises
tiny hairs on my neck; then his lips begin at the crevice
of my scapula skip down to my clavicle, around
my breasts, and slowly trace an untraceable path
to my navel. Clothes frantically tossed
onto a rattan chair, bodies
clasped together . . . what!
Do I want to buy the briefcase?
Yes, yes, yes.
~ first published in Confetti in a Silent City