Pleased at day’s end to be lying warm in bed,
night supplies to hand: cranberry juice, tonic water, whiskey
she swears sends her back when bad dreams
wake her up at three.
An upright page declaring ‘Today is Thursday’,
—confusion often trips her up at dawn.
Her radio set just right, her walker within easy reach.
I say goodnight, go down to watch TV.
John Lennon, in disarming Scouse,
explains to a stoned American how ‘Carry that Weight’
doesn’t mean a thing. Then she calls me.

On the landing, hands against the wall, she wonders
if I’m going out for a drink.
‘Too cold,’ I say, ‘I’m staying in. Where’s your walker?’
‘I forgot.’
‘You forgot?’
‘Yes, I forgot.’
A smile that charms me like a child.
The same, I’d say, that sixty years ago arrested him,
the night my father stopped her,
she, returning from a dance with friends,
he, on the beat. He asked her name, advised her kindly
not to cycle in the dark without a light.