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March 20, 2019

At first, they glanced, and glanced again, before
each knew the way to ask, and to respond;
and as their confidences grew, each saw
the other’s gap of love, and far beyond,

and learned, like breathing out and in, to sense
and meet the other’s needs; and thus their own.
But now, in relearned doubt and coy pretence
a new-found germ of awkwardness has grown.

Back then, it was enough to hint desire
for her (or him), to know, nine times in ten,
that she (or he) would correspond in kind.

Today, as each more rarely feels inspired
the odds are merely vanishing, that when
one sings of love, the other’s lines will rhyme.



Published in a Hedgehog Press Stickleback edition

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Helen permalink
    March 20, 2019 9:57 am

    Great poem, Phil, I was struck by it when I read it in published form. The apparent simplicity of it is really striking, it’s so well crafted.

  2. March 20, 2019 9:59 am

    thanks Hel

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