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A Nightcliff Evening

A Nightcliff Evening

The pastel light of evening fades to the indigo of night,
Trees brooding silhouettes above, save where the string
Of lights picks out the furrows of pale trunks and
Thrusting limbs. 

“42; pizza” rings out in sing-song baritone, the flickering flame 
Of the wood oven tincturing its owner’s crisp white singlet,
And lending his muscles a little more definition,
To the delight of some present. 

The long table is strangely quiet tonight, with no loud 
Voices or laughter losing itself amongst the trees;
Or the frantic chaos of young children testing
The limits of parental patience.

There is a sombre quality to the scene, and the 
Last Supper comes to mind though there are more 
Than thirteen, and tomorrow is both far away 
And a Sabbath.

Over there, a cluster of young girls sit and lie with 
A candle between, the backdrop of darkness giving 
A natural frame to the scene, and the uplighting
Reminiscent of Joseph Wright…of Derby.

Here, there is casual conversation, wide ranging, mostly
Wry humour or surprising intimate revelation,
That smooths friendship and leads on to 
Understanding, and acceptance.

A fine tempranillo from the Riverland surprises, and 
Is counterpoint to a terrine from France, a rich layering 
Of flavours across the palate, washed clean by wine,
Ready for more.

Too soon, the importuning of early morning starts truncates
The evening, and the fumbling ritual of clearing up begins,
Unaided by commonsense lights, a social Braille;
And we look forward to the next time.

Copyright © | Year Posted 2017

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