Northwords Now Issue 35

The FREE literary magazine of the North

A Kiss

by Sue Pepper

He and she
sit side by side on the bus;
gnarled, worn, bent
like two old apple trees
frosted white.

You can hear the clack of their bones
as they get to their feet
and set off between the seats,
clutching at bars and helping hands
in a soft shoe shuffle,
a slow sideways two step
to the door.

They make a moon landing
to the safety of the pavement
on the unreliable hinges of their knees,

where he lifts her hand to his cheek,
kisses her fingers,
gently.

They walk on,
leaning together,
her hand under his arm.