2004 zygoteinmycoffee Ink.
ignorance is the coin of her realm
by Karl Koweski
after the second time
in less than a week
I came home from work
pockets jangling with quarters
for the vending machines
only to find the pockets empty
by the time I was ready
to return to the factory
the next morning, I
wanted some answers

suspecting my daughter
shrewd beyond her years
of robbing me for candy money
I interrogated her first
she disavowed any knowledge
even after I pried the head
off her favorite Barbie

I braced the wife next
she readily admitted the theft
offering to compensate me with
however many singles I needed

but I wanted to know
what she needed the quarters for
she didn't work
she had no contact with any
vending machines I was aware of

after a moment's hesitation
the wife opened her bureau
and withdrew a bank bang
engorged with rolls of quarters
nickels and dimes and in a
conspiratorial whisper confided
that she kept the coins in
case the stock market collapses
and paper money
won't be any good, anymore
(JANUARY 19th, 2004)