Meeting in Galway

by Sarah Anderson

1.

They agreed to meet at half seven,
the pub on the corner with the bright yellow door.

He told her to look for his faded red tshirt. “Last call,
blokes.” She left with him, the barrels rolling

out the door, past the canal, stacked for the taking.
The smell of crepes on weekend mornings filled the town,

filled his room, from the open market below. She’d buy
thick candles and curry soup with mustard seeds

to hold and gently pop between her front teeth. She’d buy him
a scarf and wrap it loosely around his neck.

2.

In hysterics, they fell down one afternoon trying to balance
a mattress on their heads, carrying it along the canal. When she had a fever

and saw a frenzy of white birds in his room, he asked her about them and held a cool
washcloth to her cheek. She imagined his older face.

3.

Fifteen years and I smell that town still rain and bricks of bog turf burning. The
same texture every night. You were never the same

except in your transience.