Get Your Premium Membership

The Prado Thieves

I noticed her limp immediately when she sat next to me on the bench in the park outside of the Prado. I inquired about her deep brown eyes behind her octagonal glasses that looked sad and defeated. “I was robbed here yesterday, during siesta,” she said. “Two men with knives jumped out from the bushes.” She was Finnish and her trip to Spain had to be cut short because of the incident. For a moment, I wondered, but that didn’t stop me from asking her if I could buy her a cup of coffee. Minna looked tall and slender in black jeans and matching leather boots and her hair billowed while she hobbled as we walked to a nearby café. We chatted about our countries over coffee and chocolate; I told her about Brooklyn and baseball and she talked of a girl’s life in Helsinki. When our cups were empty we drank cold Spanish lagers under the café’s awning and we laughed and connected and Minna seemed to forget about the previous day’s terrible afternoon with each cool sip. I trusted her true and dusky eyes and asked her if I could lend her some cash. “You can mail me a check when you get home,” I said, but Minna shook her head. “At least take some pesatas to get you through the day,” I added. I reached for my wallet, but she touched my knee. She smiled faintly and brushed her hair out of her face. “There is something you can do,” she said. “I don’t want to leave Madrid with a bad taste in my mouth. Can you walk with me past where I was robbed yesterday?” My guard went up again and I thought, for a shameful moment, that this was part of her plan. I reluctantly agreed to help Minna exorcise the thievish bad vibes and we walked back to the spot of the offense. She held my hand and I half-expected a knife-wielding duo to spring from the shrubbery, but there was nothing except for the sleepy midday Spanish sun poking itself through the canopy of trees. “Do you feel better?” I asked as we returned to the bench in front of the Prado. She didn’t say anything, but held my hand tighter.

Copyright © | Year Posted 2020




Post Comments

Poetrysoup is an environment of encouragement and growth so only provide specific positive comments that indicate what you appreciate about the poem.

Please Login to post a comment

Date: 7/10/2020 7:06:00 PM
you've captured this moment beautifully and had me totally enthralled. if it's a true story, i hope it had a happy ending. well done, matt...
Login to Reply