Old, cold orgasms sit on the shelves in jars,
the same faded yellow as streetlights at sunrise,
and the floorboards shiver regularly,
a bone-deep double-beat like a giant's bored heart,
like yours; she feels your fingertips in the frigid window-panes
and in the duck-egg blue of the weak gas flame.
The world and the winds and the ordinary citizens call,
but Girl shifts radio stations and tweaks the volume knob,
as terrified of blatant truth as she is of putting down the book
of your lies
– she can only learn slowly, like dawn filtering through clotting perfume,
calmly aligning strips of sellotape with the fracture lines,
assuming her heart is crystal because it cleaves so cleanly.
Trust lies on the welcome mat outside,
alone and morose and severely malnutritioned,
staring up at stationary clouds and shifting galaxies
with the glassy-eyed wisdom and dignity
of stuffed deer-heads,
of the defeated and dead.
Don't come doctoring now, she's better off without it.