I met a girl at a wedding
She had a fur stole.
Though I wasn’t bothered
She rushed to apologize
Explaining that it was her grandmother’s
And more a crime not to wear it.
Found out I was a girlfriend not a wife
And said bitterly, they’re in fashion now.
She explained that she, once a wife,
Had been relegated back to girlfriend status
Topping it off with the comprehensive phrase: it’s complicated.
Then she laughed, said she was fine
But it was clear she was not fine.
Declared us friends
And promised me more details after the ceremony.
I did not seek her out.
I had a sense that once she started talking
She would not be able to stop.
I danced one song with her.
She was manic
Dancing her fierce fake happiness
Bare to all.
Three times she told me
How she tore the edge of her dress
With her stiletto
Unaware of her own repetition
Unaware that she had actually injured my toe
In her clumsy drunken ambling.
In the process of self-destructing
Unable to take ownership of the better things
She threw her stole aside.
The things she still wore
Couldn’t withstand the strain
And shredded apart
Just from being near her.
Whose friend is that, people asked me judgmentally.
I defended her the best I could
But neither did I want to to get caught up
In the wake of her desperation.