I still find the matches holding her place
in Gay’s Fables, or Hobbes. The spines have suffered.
Those days, she worked at a desk on the landing, slept
on a sofa, her glass at hand. She cooked from expensive tins
in a stairwell kitchen. The strutting pigeons nested
against the chimney, where her chair caught the balcony sun.
John slept in the orderly bedroom. Who gave them
a gallon of twenty-year old Jameson as a wedding present?
She met a man in the alley exposing his private parts
(which she told me were not at all undersized) and tried
persuading him to join her, and meet her friend the psychiatrist
in the corner lounge. That was kind. Now I would ask her
what had happened, that she was in such disarray, as one
might search for a defence. But she had done no wrong.