Saturday, 5 June 2021

Alongside the Lake

by Tobi Alfier

They were married in Indiana
just before fall. Colors of ash, delicate
gray/white and the hallowed hush
of citrus trees, leaves beginning to curl
for the winter, fruit long gone.

The sky sparkled through windows of a tent
made for bliss—for everyone, not just the two.
Parquet floor for gliding, for a first dance
and many more, until the wee hours.

Breakfast served up for the few who’d stayed:
soft-boiled egg with caviar and baguette,
Veuve Clicquot la Grande Dame with juice,
French Press coffee with chicory, and beignets,
their initials stenciled in powdered sugar.

They had already left, exhausted from
the day. Hand in hand in a village pub
they’ll toast, listen to accents, come home
with gifts, dialects, lace curtains

with daffodils for every room,
maybe plans for a child they’ll name Gemma.
The scent of rose as they unpack their bags
and drift to sleep spooning, nightbirds deep in song.

* * * * *

“Alongside the Lake” was first published in Live Encounters and is part of Tobi Alfiers new chapbook Grit & Grace.

Tobi Alfier is a multiple Pushcart nominee and multiple Best of the Net nominee. Symmetry: earth and sky was published by Main Street Rag. Her chapbook Grit & Grace was published by Orchard Street Press (March, 2021). She is co-editor of San Pedro River Review (

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