The fortune

Outside a light rain is falling

turning the concrete path grey-black.

With friends, I sit and drink. We stay warm and laugh

one cries out

“We have a treat coming tonight” and he looks at his phone.

A few drinks later, a knock at the door.

A man near to it swings it open.

A tall woman, thin and bent, her face a centre to a nest of black hair,

someone to frighten children strides inside.

She holds a red case that reads

Madame LaCarrie -Fortunes told.

The laughter and talking stops

but all around the light reflects off white teeth

the room full of smiles.

The woman stands before us, full of confidence

Surveying the room with a cruel eye and thin-lipped hunger.

She holds out her free hand, the other clutching her red box

And says

“I can see the future.”

It is all she says before striding forward and humping her box down

So that it claps with a bang.

We all follow her movements.

She holds her hands out again and waits.

Those who know lead the action

And they start to put coins in the gypsy’s palm, and she gulps them into her pockets

With greed and flashing eyes.

Someone shouts; “Turn down the lights” and they are turned down until

Only around the fortune teller lights glow, enflaming her black hair.

The box is opened, and the table is littered with her cards. She points to me.

“Choose,” she says. One eye open more than the other.

I had not laid a coin in her hand.

“Choose” again comes the hissed command

And I choose.

The card is turned over, and we look to it.

“The woman you love, loves you not,

No one will ever be true to you,

You are not true to yourself.”

It is all she says and then looks around the room and selects another.

Sitting back her words echo in my mind

And drive me into a fury.

“What do you mean?” Suddenly I shout.

The crowd stops, the old woman’s eyes smile, sending me deeper into a fury.

“I have spoken,” she says. “There are no more sights for you, remember my words.”

The woman I love has found the flaws in me, and it twists inside me

The gypsy woman has only touched the nerve; the wound appeared by my own thoughts.

Suddenly, in that crowded room, I was alone

My thoughts ran to you.

I have been cut down.

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