i saw a fox walking towards me in the darkness.
it stalked up the street, we shared a footpath.
headlights swept sparkles across wet concrete
i reached for my phone, knowing i didn’t need an Instagram picture to prove anything
the fox froze, and disappeared through a fence into the night.
on the tube, a boy sat down with his young mum.
she sat hunched over him, spoke in whispers, and when she smiled it was quick, forced because he waited for it each time he said something to her
the boy chatted and rummaged through the shopping for a snack
he didn’t know or care about the unspoken tube-oath of silence
he stuffed his face with chocolate popcorn, grinning at the couple beside me with rainbows painted on their faces
ssh, his mum said
he pushed more popcorn into his mouth, then painted arches in the air with his hands
in the reflection, the rainbow-faced boyfriend smiled back
the boy’s mum shuffled in her seat. fixed the boy’s hair, pulled him closer. pressed a kiss into his head.
‘mummy,’ the boy said loudly. ‘do you know chocolate is my favourite of all the fruits? but actually you are in front of any foods is how much i love you. even more than chocolate.”
this city is laced with memories of the most unsure years of my life.
the triggers are everywhere –
this was when
here was where
i want to reach through time and hug myself
tell that girl,
you did the best you could.
everything is going to be ok.