Not the unblemished hands but the work gloves.
Not the tasting menu but the ice cream truck.
Not the sermon preached but a whisper at dawn.
Not the sea but the serpent under a dress.
Not the diamond ring but a forty-seven-dollar band.
Not the gown of lace but a white cotton dress.
Not the resort honeymoon but two dented pillows.
Not the wedding silver but a scratched spoon.
Not the bridal gift but a nightly homecoming.
Not the philosophy of love but the spark and ignition.
Not the expert advice but endurance.
Not the compass but the long route from me to you.

Suzanne O’Connell is a poet living in Los Angeles. Her recently published work can be found in Poet Lore, The Menacing Hedge, Steam Ticket, Rubbertop Review, Paperplates Magazine, Glint Literary Journal, American Chordata, Alembic, and Forge. O’Connell was nominated twice for the Pushcart Prize.