In the space

of a week two things have
happened. One is forgotten now,
though the other is persistent,
will not chastise memory.
It is this; as I leaned into
the bathroom mirror I thought
of how unfaithful my own reflected
image can be. It does not express
the smell of cigars or the layer
of a night's drinking imitating clay,
clinging to my teeth.
When the camera was exposed
I refused to see the pictures,
blocked them out and ignored
how light was caught, developed
and moulded. I pushed my tongue
across a molar, felt crags like mountains.

We reached the bus stop too late.
the church's shell, early rain,
lines of water in streams down
the hill as a drunk swore into a bin,
holding his crutch like a lover,
then threw it into the road.
You waited, standing on the other side
of the shelter from where my words
were blocked by a perspex shield,
rain pushed its sound at the walls
of the hollow church and takeaways.
A dry brittle leaf meandered
through rain fed ephemeral rivers,
falling to traffic as the approaching bus
turned towards us, its engine
drowning another awkward apology