The half-filled out crossword puzzle
sprawled across the kitchen table
like a battleground where minefields
were still hidden.

She wouldn’t mind it if I filled out
a couple answers, right? If I copied
her handwriting and answered a few
of the sports questions (she always
asks me about the sports questions
anyway, really, I’d be helping her out.)

The cat regards me with contempt
and hisses a warning before
running inexplicably into the
next room at full speed.

I start filling out the clues
about quarterbacks and championships,
but soon I’m filling in book titles
and, hey, this puzzle is kind of easy,
I’m getting way more of the answers than
I normally do, who would have thought
that there would be so many questions about Die Hard?

Then I get to 14 Down. Eight letter word.
The clue reads “The End.” So far, I’ve got
w_reove_. That just doesn’t make sense.
Maybe it’s in a foreign language?

I keep trying different combinations,
when my phone buzzes. The text message reads:
“Don’t over think 14 Down. I’m breaking up with you.”
At least I finally finished a crossword puzzle with a pen.