For years now
(How long? I have stopped counting.)
you have threatened to leave.
Always couched in concern,
always phrased to make you sound like a hero,
and I have played the role you’ve written,
the beggar,
pleading on my knees,
arms around your legs.

But little pieces keep falling.
A muffled phone conversation:

“ . . . just where I want her . . .”
A smirk reflected in a window.
The proud gait of a victor.

The dawn came long ago
but clouds and curtains hid the light.

Now I see
in every move the calculation,
in every smile the chill of winter.

Today I call your bluff.

Tomorrow I am buoyant.