For years I’ve had this exuberant bed that looked like The Egyptian Crib for Nefertiti.
A man I was living with in 2001 picked it out, 6 months before we broke up.
I kept the bed.
Last week when I returned from Italy, I was changing the sheets and the bed fell apart, literally crumbled to pieces–one wood panel collapsed, the other became unglued, the footboard dropped to the floor with a loud thud and then the massive headboard plummeted down almost killing my cat…chips and splinters flying everywhere around the room…There was such wonder and magnificence to this spectacle that I just stood there, mesmerized.
Then I tucked each panel under my arm and took the elevator down to the garbage area behind my building. As I tried to maneuver the planks into the dumpster, one of my neighbors–a recently divorced woman with two kids–walked by and asked me what happened. I told her the bed had come undone for no apparent reason.
“You think it ever brought me joy?” I exclaimed, slamming the last panel to the ground.
She paused looking at the mahogany debris scattered all around the yard and then said, “Why don’t you come over to my place tonight for a glass of wine.”
In all the 15 years we had been neighbors, this was the first time she ever spoke to me.
I didn’t even know her name.
Marina Rubin’s work has appeared in over eighty magazines and anthologies, including 13th Warrior Review, Asheville Poetry Review, Dos Passos Review, 5AM, Nano Fiction, Coal City, Green Hills Literary Lantern, Jewish Currents, Lilith, Pearl, Poet Lore, Skidrow Penthouse, The Worcester Review, and many more. She is an editor of Mudfish, the Tribeca literary and art magazine. She is a 2013 recipient of the COJECO Blueprint Fellowship.