Ladies' Lunch
by Naomi Hamilton

Women in floral scarves who once
strolled the lawns and leaned close
to curling petals now sit in restaurants
sipping linden flower tea, agreeing
it’s enough to buy an ironing board
even if none of them can set it up.
They titter at the waitress' tight dress
and the orange price stickers stuck
on the soles of her heels. These are
women born in November yet wear
long sapphire necklaces, as if they
found Cleopatra’s tomb on vacation
and pinched her amulets. Long after
the poppy seed crackers are eaten
and busboys wash lipstick stains
from their cups, they will lie down
with husbands on pillows fragranced
with another woman’s perfume.

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