Around Midnight

timing was never more important

than opportunity when hungry

we ate out, or would grab something

maybe just an amuse-bouche

at the bus shelter, a first course perhaps

irrespective of weather

because hungry is no respecter of climate

we always ate together

we rarely went without without

in sun, the rain, the snow

until naturally our routines began to drift

into more regular meal routines

before economy and fate peeled us apart


I returned one midnight

to oranges, not as a ravenous teenager

body craving any food or fruit every hour

these midnight oranges were rarer

at first a self-indulgent treat

until our segmentation complete

meant for awhile midnight oranges

were the only food

that I had to eat


n.b. NaPoWriMo 2021 Day Twenty Two prompt: metonymy – midnight oranges. Good luck looking that up.


CLP 22/04/2021

Back to School

Who was the teacher? Who the pupil?

It had been longer than I dared remember

I sensed I had forgotten everything

I feared I was unable

Out of my depth

Unqualified to be on such a course

But I was frightfully excited to be with my new best friend

You were saying…

No, after you… 

with all the nervous good manners that stilt conversation.


Eventually we dropped the small talk and began the serious business of studying

each other’s flickering eyelids, parting lips, breaths

the tones of moans and involuntary movements

the wildly unfocused looks

and deep-rooted smiles

for all those hours in that badly lit hotel room,

that was greatly improved by the beam of the full moon

cast on our discarded clothes.


CLP  28th August, 2020