smoke trickles from her lips
and she averts her eyes
shame, plain on her face.

the ashtray is overflowing
while the haunted
tick tock
of the clock on the wall
seems to echo
through the crammed space,
a lash with every sound.

he stares at her
mouth dry
and unable to spit the poisonous words
he wants to throw at her
for he knows
they will never reach her core.

he loved her once ~
now he can barely stand her
but his feet weigh a ton.
he is not strong enough
to move them
and walk out the door.

she smiles at him,
thin and stretched,
and the irony
makes him explode
in hysterical laughter.