Coming Thunder

The air always over-familiar
With us. Day long a palpable presence
In pubs and cinemas, in public squares;
Day long illicit in quick, frictional
Glances. Those who’ve wandered out have felt it
And sniggered at the loud elastic snaps.

It’s welcome and it’s not. Personal space
Evaporating, quietly coerced
Out of existence, now unfeasible.
The air bear-hugs us until everything
Is shared. Take my ice-cream for example:
All have a claim in the park. Want a lick?

The sparrow’s narrow throat is parched and packed
With shimmer, haze, diurnal dew of sweat.
Her singing is impossible. What’s left?
Park in a cardboard box; conversation
Suspended; hovering above our heads,
The thunder flies make dizzy arabesques.

Gareth Cutter Coming Thunder

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