Poem: After Online Dating

Online Dating

Dave Hood

The remnants of the wedding’s
boxed in storage.
You’re on your own, alone again,
single, feeling awkward about dating,
like when you were twenty.

Though free from feeling trapped
With an partner who broke your trust,
A man you met on a social dating site,
Married only two years,
You believe your existence
still an incomplete puzzle.

You yearn for a loyal companion,
Ideally a kindred spirit, who’ll provide
novel pleasure and sustained happiness
to complete your life.

Since the acrimonious divorce,
You cope with the melancholy
of solitude—embracing routines
of work, casual friendships,
the type that dissolves as time passes,
habitually shopping for material possessions,
absorbing yourself in intellectual distractions.

One day, while working, you walk in the hall
To your office, sit at your desk.
An acquaintance peers in, asks: “How are you?”
“Fine”, you respond. Your mind filled with
worries, work, a deadline, a desire to be alone.

As you stroll to lunch, your smart phone turned on.
Unexpectedly, a new friend calls, asks: “How are you?”
“Fine”, you say. Your life filled with
debts, regrets, loneliness,
a desire to hang up the phone.
You turn down the invitation for dinner.

Driving home, you’re alone,
listening to soothing jazz,
thankful, —the burden of work,
finished for another week.

You park the leased black Mustang,
With six cylinders, high end stereo system.
Then ride the elevator, solo, to your abode,
on the top floor, the penthouse,
contemplating what you’ll do
in your leisure time.

As you unlock the door
to your upscale, one-bedroom condo,
adorned with opulent possessions:
a leather sofa, navy wing chair, big screen TV,
bedroom set with a double bed,
oak table and four empty chairs,
various portrait paintings, fine art photographs,

A neighbor passes, says, “hello”,
then asks:”How are you?”
“Fine”, you respond impatiently.

Then you shut, lock, deadbolt
the door to the outside world,
glance at your lavish coffee table,
notice the self-help books,
pop culture magazines,
newspapers of bad news,
realize that each is a distraction of solitude.

There’s also an empty wine bottle
and tipped over glass
reminding you of last night’s
loneliness.

Feeling a sense of desperation,
melancholy, you tell yourself:
I’m unable to live this way,
Another weekend by myself.

With the tablet, you log on
to the Internet, begin searching
like a detective, on Match.com,
for a soul mate. Thinking to yourself:
I’ll find someone who’s right
This time.

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About Dave Hood

Lover of poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction. Professional photographer and writer. Without the arts, life would be rather mundane, like a walk down the same old path on a dull day.
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