Gene Groves
Hanging On

It is compartmentalized,
placed in a plastic tray with the items at airport security.
Watch, purse, mobile, shoes, handbag
do not completely fill the space.
There is room for pain at the edge
to slide along a conveyor belt
through the detecting machine,
invisible to enquiring eyes.
It walks with her through the arch
rings no bells there.
She holds her arms out,
clothes are patted,
her hair mussed.
She is told she is okay,
can collect her baggage.
She wishes she could leave it behind.