Her words scatter
the dark animals of his sleep,
and out on the nocturnal avenues,
the fissures of a deep need.
Sometimes the girl hates those things
that come too close
and draw their hurt
like a curtain about her room,
and in the dark
would have her listen, understand.
For she has her own dark ribbons
to bind tight the beckoning night.
What she has is hers alone
and the boy sent out
into the reviving cold,
what will he find when he comes back,
when he’s shed the chrysalis
of his insect fears?
She’s had time to hold the night
in her own lungs,
and in her breast there’s space again
for the animals of his sleep
to clasp on to.
Copyright Ricky Barrow 2014