On this new bank weeds sink
beneath the soles of us
spring back bruised when we look away.
You tell me that you wear me on your lips all afternoon
but I see no sign
no flushing, no rouge
no hint of my strange accent in your words.
I wonder if you know the taste of me.
The birds are spies, perched
with a perfect view to analyse our tiny theatres.
Do you think they count them,
flexing for almost-hand-holds
retracting shyly much too soon?
I bet they’re laughing at us while we mistake it for song.
Maybe I give them too much credit.
In our silences, I study the leather of your shoe
how its creases mirror the form of your smile
and I cannot help but reflect it
back to the ground.
Today the dandelions are greying and ready to be spent.
We behave like children
picking roughly at their sap-ridden stems
one o’clock, two o’clock, three.