Her punishment, her lizard tongue:
it had the power to knock seagulls sideways
she was big mouth honest
couldn’t keep anything in
on the other foot he was keep it all closed up
clam tart up to his lovely heart.

His punishment, he withheld love
with Fort Knox ferocity.
Unlike Orpheus he didn’t look back out of love
he just didn’t look back.

The spectre that led them was on Valium and Red Bull.
They were always lost; she was more lost than him
because Harry Hope hung round her
with an oxygen tent and credit for her mobile phone,
making mischief out of her juvenile jaunts
through the ventricles that were not yet clogged
with psychobabble and maybes.

She couldn’t find her knickers
he couldn’t find his Mere
he couldn’t find her knickers either
even though she was wearing them on her head
It was a sad scenario of wrong direction
and very crossroads that lead nowhere.

She told the one in the shadows how shady he was
and how his half-truths only fed her half the time
and the puzzlement was she loved the one in the shadows.
From the start it was a painful love,
all mangled like the handlebar sculptures
that passes for art at roundabouts in Irish towns.

There was no going back, no going forward
no French kissing, no Irish kissing, no pleasure of any sort
except the odd time he appeared in her dreams
proffering nine talking penises.
The penises gave back cheek and she loved it,
in the dream she licks her lips
but when she woke up she was dry mouthed and melancholy
she swore she must give up the smokes.
She gave up dreaming instead.