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In the dejection, the treadmill of travel,

a cowed, haltered, processed client,

with two items of baggage and a

transparent bag for toiletries,

I had a singular apparition,

you were waiting in the wings,

the ashen face of the latter days, blue blouse,

red ‘fifties skirt, the faded plimsolls—

waiting beyond the mile of retail

the dimple-and-canine marketing

expanded in the eight years since,

then you again, behind glass glimpsed

in the lemon room at my sister’s, where

a niece worked her loom,

you were shining out at me— young woman

in a riding habit, comely, fulsome,

painted by your mother, you were

present then, in the sealed room, is that

the end of the tunnel they talk about ?

I shall find out.


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