she had quickly cleaned the house

now she waited

perched nervously on the kitchen stool

as if she were a bird ready to take flight

Finally, he arrives

dressed fashionably in grey and white

he cuts an elegant figure

and the interview begins—

he asks:

which do you prefer

the black enamel finish

or these soft, muted rose-tones

shall we discuss the various

textures of carpets

or do you prefer the sensual earthiness

of a fine wood floor

the stark simplicity of the modern

or the eclectic clutter

of the victorian?

she nervously draws on her cigarette

wipes the perspiration from

the space between her eyes

and slowly turns her head

away from him

how do you feel about lighting?

he asks her

gallery-style tract lights

or the subdued and more subtle

lamp lighting

but wait, he implores, as though

looking at her for the first time—

how important is this to you?

and she, with barely a whisper answers him:

I can’t hear you—

What ever are you talking about?

all she hears is the tick, tick, tick

of her kitchen clock

passing carefully measured time

and the faint, very faint

scuffling of a spider

moving up the wall