A Girl’s Best Friend
Her Do you buy diamonds please? in Eastern
startles like a hold up. I look round expecting hard case in
instead get pretty young woman with toddler and cumbrous pram.
The assistant explains with shop’s liveried politeness that they
not gems. Her reverse ceremony slipping white gold engagement
wedding bands from finger, proffering in palm I wish to sell
Rings are popped on digital scales strict as diet weigh-in.
quizzed under Jeweller’s monocle. She jiggles pram, strains a
smile at the child;
begetting stories in us like a scriptwriters’ brainstorm
£200. The girl beams as if a surprise scratch card win, A lot of
His Hallmark card cheeriness Buy yourself something nice. She
off to translate the twenties into nappies, fish fingers,
Debt and death lurk behind his We see it all, manager
with the good stuff too, weddings and birthdays. But the glitter
has been heisted from the £500 pendant I have ducked and dived
As I leave, the rings, their past exorcised by cloth and polish,
are set in the shop’s spangled window display. Their secondhand
status rebranded for superstitious customers as pre-loved.
If you have any comments on this poem, Fiona Sinclair would be
pleased to hear from you.