Tom Barlow


He is lacing up his boots again.
How he broods, still convinced
he belongs in her bed despite her words,

her attorney, the judge, the cops.
They all misread his complexities,
seem to have forgotten how he stood

for her through the winters when ice
would have frozen her heart. He is ready
now to right that wrong, to remind her

how she shone on his arm, how
his wisdom saved her from so many
foolish missteps. He refuses to believe

all she wants now from their marriage
is glass bottles and gasoline, for her bed
is about to be emptied and he vows she

will never sleep there again until his hand
rests next to her throat.



Tom Barlow is a Columbus, Ohio writer of poetry, short stories and novels.  His writing has appeared in over 100 journals. He tends to return to several themes: that reality is unstable ground, that there is a reason behind every human action,  no matter how squalid, and, in the words of Plato, “Death is not the worst thing than can happen to men.” See more at