You can buy a Roman coin for four dollars actually

a dollar ninety-five plus two dollars shipping


which means that it costs more to ship

the Roman coin than the coin is worth which means


the three day shipment from Toledo to Boston

is more valuable than the shipment from Rome to Toledo


which took 1500 years, you could say the coin now

is the opposite of money, its face worn such that


should you clean it there would be nothing there

underneath, no face, and money always needs


a type of face, arguably the coin looks better

when left caked in the hardened accumulation


of years, though this accumulation may be false,

though most seeking to buy wish to remove this


as to judge clearly the merit of artifact,

though such actions serve only to sever the item


from the origin being judged so as to force then a certain imagining,


anyway the reviews say don't bother you can't see the face,

the reviews say I love it I feel connected to the past, the reviews say


don't trust the seller, they ask if it comes with the slip

that verifies it is true, a slip that in lieu of hardened dirt


and other accumulations will prove the passage of time with authority

not questioned nor named, and with this the value


is placed elsewhere yet again, so that you are not sure what value is

besides an idea, an idea related to the possibility of the coin’s


second forging, which is almost more impressive than the first, this

process by which we satisfy our desires with falsehood,


by which all dirt can somehow look the same as its presence

is both an elemental wish and sanction


*Covering an Amazon listing

Kate Lindroos
lives in the foothills of the Berkshires. Recent poems appear in jubilat, Sixth Finch, Barrow Street, Permafrost, and Big Big Wednesday.