by Iain Matheson

Pirouette around the room
chanting gospel songs about
sin (how best to avoid it)

or conspire like pirates or
gasp in helpless laughter or
take turns to correspond with

a niece in Cincinnati
a cousin in Alice Springs
a sincere aunt in Perthshire.

Newspapers under the bed:
behind a wall desperate
spiders breathe persistently.

Curried mince for supper with
expensive asparagus:
dustbins outside the window,

a saltire still hangs over
the burnt-out cinema where
we first saw Cinderella.