Claudia Gary


Golden Letters

A Hollywood celebrity’s former fiancĂ© encounters resistance while preparing to sell her love letters

My conscience is completely clear.
Don’t try to claim that I’m unkind
for auctioning your letters, dear.

When did you ever shed a tear
for me, to humdrum life resigned?
My conscience is completely clear,

as blameless as the auctioneer.
Since high hopes got me in a bind,
I’m counting on your letters, dear,

to generate the kind of cheer
with which my pockets can be lined.
Where is your conscience? Mine is clear.

Foreclosure dates are drawing near,
and our hot dates are far behind.
The action’s in the letters, dear!

Hey, in your starless yesteryear,
you didn’t care. Why should you mind
today? You’ve wiped my conscience clear.
I’m auctioning your letters, dear.

Claudia Gary is author of Humor Me (David Robert Books, 2006) and several chapbooks, most recently Bikini Buyer’s Remorse. A 2014 finalist for the Howard Nemerov Sonnet Award and a 2013 semifinalist for the Anthony Hecht Poetry Prize, she writes, edits, sings, and composes (tonally) in the Washington D.C. area. Her poems appear in anthologies such as Forgetting Home (Barefoot Muse, 2013) and Villanelles (Everyman Press, 2012), and in journals internationally. Her articles on health appear in The VVA Veteran, VFW, and other magazines. For more info, see