First Refusal

to Lisa

Sometimes the beauty of knowing someone for a long time
Can erupt in your pocket like a firecracker on New Year’s Eve

We hung up since decorum demanded that two hours
Scratched the limit of what a partner could well be expected
To wait for with dinner also it was your turn to walk the dog
And my washing was going stale in the drum despite the dry sky
Not because we’d run out of things to say or when we ran out
We couldn’t be bothered with each other’s silence

We hadn’t spoken in months and had WhatsApp and mutual
Friends to thank for what little we knew of where the other was at
(me: exhausted; you: expecting)
For always there is the job and the commute and the car in the garage
As well as the stories we tell ourselves to go on going on despite
Our better judgement and our longing for rain

I was a fat kid in my brother’s jeans and you were asleep
With your swim goggles on a sofa cushion you’d brought to school
For the purpose. With you there will always be fat to chew
And still after so many stories tested and told
I’d turn to you for first refusal