Sunday 31st August



The man in Black arrived in a Dark Blue car,
“I’ve come for my boots” he said, and laughed.
We’d laughed about his boots a lot in recent
times & now the joke was about to reach it’s
conclusion I thought I detected a light sadness
in his laugh.
“Come, sit down. There’s cake & coffee, almond
paste sweets from foreign lands, jugs of breadsticks
exotic biscuits & fat green olives, fresh from the city.
A banquet has been laid in honour of your visit”
The man in Black sat down at our table, remembering
not to remove his shoes, lest they go the way of
his boots – we laughed. He told me stories of his
travels, of gorges, wild water ravines, walking,
unfettered by path or signpost. We both made a face
when spoke of the crowded places lining the Ocean
& how he had turned from them in revulsion,
returning to the wild with his tribe.
He ate the almond paste sweets from foreign lands,
drank his coffee long & Black and kept the laughter
alive, tossing ad-libs between us as we caricatured
the members of our tribe with affection.
As he left, I slipped his boots into his hands,
noting that his, unlike mine, were devoid of fat
socks – we laughed, and I was still laughing
as his tail lights followed the sound of that Dark Blue car
into the distance. As happened ever time we met, his
leaving left a silent hole, his laughter triggers missed
yet the sound of our combined happiness reverberated around
the room as we re-entered, counting the days until his return.


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