Boomslang Poetry

Sunday Tea

Dust dares to dance in Mamís parlour
in rays that stray uninvited to tea.

The table is set neatly, on the crisp cloth
a crinolined Belle picks wild flowers,

best cups stand milked and ready,
and tinned salmon sandwiches curl slowly.

Tidiness spreads out of the front
door and over the garden,

over the pair of sentinel golden yews -
closed-clipped keeping in their poison,

over regimented vegetables and weed-free
brick paths traversed by new snail trails,

out of the oiled gate and down the damp streets
of the village that smell of fresh paint and clean nets,

along the sharp lines of the railway and out into the estuary,
where mud-stuck fish are picked to the bone by gulls,

and on out over the darkening sea,
that thinks twice before coming home.