Saturday, 20 March 2010

Another question -

She's asking him another question he can't answer
and that word -
'relationships' -
cuts back here from their table
as he looks aside and through the window
on to New Street.
There's a 'why' at least once
and she's stopped smiling
now it must be serious
and he should know.

Two teenagers (or early 20s,
from where I sit)
lock heart-to-mind in the coffee-shop
lean elbows at each other 'cross the table.

For his part now he's getting into stride
It seems
(his back's to me I can't hear what he says);
but her intent outstaring eyes
the lips unsmiling
make him raise hands back in defence
of some point or another;
steady, plodding, slow he moves
but she's already thought past this
"yeah yeah yeah but -"
and she leans her head on one hand
bored and unconvinced.
"I was thinking about you the other day - "
she goes on "And - "
I don't make out the rest.

Why is the male brain like some brontosaurus of discussion
while she dives past,
runs rings
dives back
stops stares
till all his arguments collapse?

"To do it properly I need - "
she's saying,
maybe it's not relationships
they're 'friends',
ah, that:
there's something else, a course, or such;
"I absolutely love it"
"humanity, these kids ... "

Perhaps some years hence she'll be heading up a project,
charity in Africa,
an NGO.

Still, she's happier now,
a real smile,
not the stressed, adapt-coerce strain of the woman unhappy in love she can't give up:
and she's laughing,
this is better,
he only glances out the window;
this time he doesn't look as if he's dodging blows or trying to be elsewhere.
He's even smiling too
I can see his profile as he turns, he's taken off his glasses ...

Reflective, she:
as he stands,
off for a comfort break.

Umbrellas up outside.
In here, wifi connection's slow.

Back in his chair in front of me
he sways to one side, and her smile breaks through the gap:
she lifts her soft arms tidying the smile.
They lean half-close, or more, it's hard to tell.

Outside, the rain dies down.

[copyright Jon Andrews 2010].

No comments:

Post a Comment