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Updated: Dec 9, 2023

That morning, they popped placebos from bubble-packs

and shared secret smiles.

While they waited for the show to start,

they got on with admin and unpacked the dishes.

They hung out washing

and made appointments,

ordered school socks

and signed up for a grant

they knew they wouldn't get

then closed the document.

He put on a second load of washing

and fed Lana del Stray.

She asked Sky TV why

loyalty counted for so little.

He read about genocide

then sent a photo of a flower to her mum.

She remembered that six-day-old rice

was still stored in the fridge.

He threw it out.

They made coffee.

Made some progress.

Forgot about the sugary pills on the tips of their tongues.

Ticked off another day.

That morning, they popped placebos from bubble-packs

and shared secret smiles.

As soon as the girls were out the door,

they felt the inactive ingredients stirring.

They chucked the washing into next door’s garden

and pulled the plug on the dull as dishwater.

Hand in hand, they headed for The Pentagon Centre

where they rode the kids’ roundabouts.

Lips smashed on lips.

Tongues tied.

They showed no respect

and zero decorum.

They kissed in cafes, under Luton Arches,

in ornamental ponds, on plinths.

Their snogging was relentless, fierce and frantic.

They set an England flag on fire

with a stray spark

struck from a tooth to tooth incident.

They wrote sonnets on the insides of each other’s cheeks

and mapped mountains of their teeth.

Sometimes, when running and kissing,

or dancing and kissing,

a little blood would be spilt.

They kissed all day

until the shoppers turned to drinkers

and the sky turned red.

Photo by Tim Mossholder

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