Contents | May 2001

In This Issue (Contributors)

The Atlantic Monthly | May 2001
The Coin Behind Your Ear

by Connie Wanek
audioear pictureHear Connie Wanek read this poem (in RealAudio)

Before you knew you owned it
it was gone, stolen, and you were a fool.
How you never felt it is the wonder,
heavy and thick,
lodged deep in your hair like a burr.
You still see the smile of the magician
as he turned the coin in his long fingers,
which had so disturbed your ear
with their caress. You watched him
lift it into the light, bright as frost,
and slip it into his maze of pockets.
You felt vainly behind your ear
but there was no second coin,
nothing to tempt him back.
No one cared to know why he did it,
only how.

Copyright © 2001 by The Atlantic Monthly Company. All rights reserved. The Atlantic Monthly; May 2001; The Coin Behind Your Ear - 01.05; Volume 287, No. 5; page 80.