Clean Sweep?

When a woman sold an odd item at her yard sale, she had no idea what she had just handed over! Fortunately, she was able to retrieve it a few days later. Here’s the story:

Grave Decision

Just another Saturday
Trying to make some bucks.
Her husband’s sleeping soundly
Out of the house she trucks
Dusty, scratched old records
Faded paint-by-number,
Quietly she hauls it all–
Mustn’t wake his slumber!

Dragged out into the driveway,
A slew of useless things:
The matador on velvet,
Some mismatched curtain rings.
Here comes someone eager
To snatch a treasure up.
There goes a battered bureau
And chipped-lip, china cup.

“How much for that old turtle?
Ceramic isn’t it?
It’s perfect for my cookies.
–The lid won’t budge a bit.”
Yet still, the lady takes it.
Deal’s done for fifty cents.
And off she carts her booty
Not knowing the contents.

The morning goes by quickly
She makes a goodly sum.
And proudly she is counting
Her well-deserved wampum.
‘Til hubby, he emerges
Alert and eagle-eyed
But suddenly, goes ashen
What is it he has spied?

A gaping hole exists where
The terrapin once was
Slowly does he crumple
In desperate heap because;
Turns out a precious cargo
Lay inside the gold-glazed urn
She’s only sold the cinders
Of the wife he had to burn!

Kathleen Mortensen © 2007


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