After Anne Sexton

A similar age when we arrive,
I’m dusky pink, you’re Prussian

and Astrakhan, inexorable station
etiquette with northern decorum

for the offertory of the city,
with our hearts in our mouths,

outlines of dressmaker’s chalk
and urbane simplistic patterns,

iron ribs, porticoes, terminal
pigeons nesting in the rafters,

and were you scared Elizabeth?
Elizabeth – I was – hungover on

a vibe in a stinking phone box,
where Tanya gave more in Percy

Circus and an unmet glance at
a taxi rank, your oyster in your

hand slips you underground and
were we twenty or twenty- one?

What did it matter? We had gone.

Julie Hogg