The Moment

In about half an hour we’ll leave
this bookshop café

In a few years
you’ll be leaving home

but meantime we joke
about this man’s woolly hat
that woman’s pile of books
tipping over

when we leave the bookshop
it will still be raining

as we laugh and hush
each other over plates
all crummy with pastry flakes

below the table there’s only
one small umbrella between us

we sit back full of chocolate
twists, savouring the dregs
of latte and orange smoothie

and the rain will mess up
your fringe and our day

in the Ladies we check make-up
and hair; squeezed side by side

the puddles will soak up
and darken the legs of your jeans
like a litmus test for acid

we turn one last time, smile
at our reflections, lopsided
in the mirror; unaware

you will hate me long
before we reach home

we touch up lipstick
and gloss, turn again

Eleanor Livingstone

If you've any comments on this poem, Eleanor Livingstone would be pleased to hear from you.