Coffee Ring

by T.L. Evans

I saw it on her desk, a blurry swirl
of darker brown exactly where I went
to place my mug, a forearm from the edge,
beside the letters labelled ‘to be burnt’.

What seemed a complete circle silhouette
was actually the endless sum combined
of smaller partial coffee rings, offset,
and fading logarithmically with time.

Why keep the same old cup for all those years,
the matching saucer long since chipped and cracked?
Or why at least not use a coaster, make
a sacrifice of just one paperback?
I ask the silence. Silence never hears.
I head back down the stairs, rejoin the wake.