There is crying tonight. You can sense it. Somewhere beneath the rain, the sound of the rain and the water flowing over the blocked drains.
It’s the saddest kind of crying – the type not meant for anyone.
There is an old man, washing up. He sings a line from a Glen Campbell song that he remembers –
I am a lineman for the county
I need you more than want you
– as he scratches at the gravy on his plate.
A wine bottle lies smashed on the pavement – the shards gathered in close.
The church bells toll.
A fox turns its head and looks down an empty street.
She tells him that she doesn’t want to see him any more.
The wind sighs contentedly in the crook of a tree.
She, another she, lets her nails tear his flesh. Just below the neck, down and across to his ribcage. Later when he is dressed and watching television, she will imagine the purple line of it burning like a neon letter in the dark.
A man smokes a cigarette out of a window and imagines he is speaking to her. Exhaling.
A child draws a smile on a window white-fogged with condensation.
He doesn’t know if he should but decides to anyway; he kisses her. She deflates. More melts into him. And it was the right thing to do.
They read the same story again and her eyes get so heavy he can feel the weight of them on his chest. On reading the last word her eyes open and she speaks – again.
For another poem, this time about a dance, click the link.