The whizz and zip of the moped,
Rocketing down the dry sodium street,
The teenage girl’s laugh cracks the dusk.
Behind brick and mortar,
Six o’ clock signals the chink of tea-plates onto the table …
The rusty hinge on the gate
Scrapes with the cheap high heel
As the girl turns aside …
A fragile shudder, a throaty rev -
And the new-minted squire of the road,
Inclines his head with the certainty of a later conquest,
And the teenage girl’s eyes shine with a timid lust.
Behind wood and glass,
The thin hand with ghost wedding ring twitches the table-cloth …
Whizz! Zap! Brr-00-mmm!
The acrid smoke her solitary love-token,
And like a whisper,
Stains the tea-plate
As she places it, unused,
In a dark and lonely cupboard.
Fiona Dunn, Kent, England