Less than a secret

the day you met her
you told yourself it was
so much less than a secret, merely
an omission, something you’d best not mention
for fear of a misunderstanding, but it was such a little event,
hardly more than a hello, though when your eyes met they seemed
to hold their own conversation, but no, it was a trick of the light,
it was really nothing, and when your hand brushed hers
it was an accident; the electricity came from
her synthetic dress. there was
no revealing moment
nothing to see,
nothing to tell.

you say
the first time
you took her out to dine
in that fine food restaurant, you were
no more than two people of different sexes, who
happened to be friends, but you knew that your wife
wouldn’t have understood, so you didn’t tell her. it wasn’t
deceit or infidelity – you hadn’t even kissed, or hardly.
true, she was attractive, but you would never, ever –
and for a while it pepped up your married life
so it seemed justified, and still there was
nothing much to see,
nothing much to tell
almost nil.

You say
it wouldn’t have happened that night
after the theatre;
if the evening had not been one of enforced silence,
causing the thoughts, words, sentences, paragraphs you wanted to share
to back up in your throats,
so you had to go back to her place to free them;
if you hadn’t both had too much to drink;
if the show hadn’t been so funny;
if you hadn’t laughed yourselves helpless,
until you fell together,
so that suddenly you
were there with her,
right there,
where you had
longed to be all along,
whispering hoarse words of desire
sharing your secret with tongue and teeth
shredding fresh silk so hopefully donned
struggling free of your Hugo Boss suit
stroking and sliding, sinking and rising,
dancing in time with forbidden fruit.

and now you say
there is no-one to blame,
it was just an irresistable force.
cold relief rises from your skin, to think
that right at the beginning, when
there was nothing to tell
you never told a thing.
Secrets, you say,
are only there
to save the

A fictional poem, posted for Esther Newton’s Weekly Writing Challenge Option 2: Write a poem on the theme of SECRETS.

©Jane Paterson Basil


17 thoughts on “Less than a secret

          1. I agree they’re some of your best. Especially the last couple days. Perhaps people are just in the habit of being voyeurs with your work. Living your trials with Paul and Laura vicariously through your poems?

            Liked by 1 person

            1. It’s possible I suppose – that’s ok, we put our words out there, but it’s not up to us to decide who reads what, and why, but I’m disappointed when my Senryu poems get more attention, because that’s usually stuff I throw in when I feel lazy or uninspired. I don’t really care about it.

              Liked by 1 person

                1. I expect you’re right – although lately I don’t mind if those poems are ignored – I think I write them for my benefit more than anything. I’m no longer sure what I want to do with them, or with myself. Maybe I need a holiday…

                  Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m doing same, for different reasons. A blogging friend (thefeatheredsleep) has persuaded me to read my first ever vampire book. She’s convinced I’ll love it. Aigpparently it’s a *soft vampire read* if that sort of thing is possible. I pick up my first one from the library today. I remain stoically open to the possibility that spilling blood is a thrilling experience 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

          1. Me too. Son #1 watches the Walking Dead but only in daytime. Once he really wanted to see the latest episode and it was after *dark* so he persuaded me to sit with him! Never again – he’s such a gentle soul, I can’t understand what he likes about them! I’ll let you know. I promised Candice I would read one and see what I think. She said she wasn’t a fan either but then went on to read the whole 10 book series!

            Liked by 1 person

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