Woman at the Post Office by Kristen Staby Rembold

Woman at the Post Office

 

An old woman’s trouble in deciding
is holding up the line.
Another crowd, another time,
a loudmouth might complain,
but here in mid-morning, the retired,
mothers, students, all stand quiet.
Her jaw slowly slackening,
insistence draining from her face.
Finally, she lifts her finger
—a pronouncement,
or merely a flicker?—
and the clerk says,
that’ll be seven-fifty.
We witnesses
stop holding our breath.
She reaches into her bag, that reflex
intact, and no wonder, considering
how a woman’s life is comprised
of procurement. The clerk
hands back her change.
Still, she hesitates.
Who can relax, knowing
there could be something else
she’d meant to say or to send?


Kristen Staby Rembold
Kristen Staby Rembold is the author of a novel, Felicity, and two chapbooks of poetry, Coming Into this World and a recent one, Leaf and Tendril. Her poetry has appeared in journals such as New Ohio Review, Appalachia, Literary Mama, Southern Poetry Review, Green Mountains Review and Crab Orchard Review. She lives in Charlottesville Virginia with her husband and they have two grown daughters.

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