Saturday, June 11, 2016

The Best Laid Plans

We started on
November 21 1987,
I was the kind of person
who didn't want surprises,

so I told her in 1990
"after we'd dated three years,
I'm gonna propose
on our fifth anniversary,
so please be sure."

She nodded and continued
the courtship.

On our fourth year of dating
in 1991
I said "I mean it,
I'm going to ask you to get married
a year from today,
so if you don't want to marry me,
you need let me know."

She nodded
and we continued the dance.

True to my word
I gave her the engagement ring
on the fifth year,
in 1992
she said yes

and we spent the next year
planning the start
of our lives together.

We were married
the day before Valentine's Day

I remember finally feeling
my long search was over,
and I had somehow
beaten the odds.

Then came the
hushed phone calls
the late nights at work,
I even busted her
after their furtive trip
to Costco when I inquired
"where’s the other half
of this lettuce four-pack?"

Two months into my marriage
and she was with someone
who wanted to give her children
and made twice as much
money as I did

and I finally understood
that quote about
the best-laid plans
of mice and men.


  1. I've said this before, but I really like how you manage to tell a story in a short space. The lettuce four-pack was a nice/funny image, that was also not funny and rather sad. I really want to copy this into my commonplace book as an example of how to craft a story in poetry.

  2. Yep. Yep. That "sure thing" lesson is so sucky. You relate this so well, so succinctly.