by Paul Tristram
Shaking like a virgin out alone in Port Talbot,
she fishes 2 valium from her argumentative purse,
sighs and shudders almost uncontrollably in relief
as she casts them neurotically mouth-wards
and washes those suckers down with a neat gin.
Smudges her lipstick, uncaringly, as she lights up
another Camel cigarette off the smouldering butt
of the old one, after several attempts at coordination.
Tapestries together Tourette’s, sneezing and coughing
for minute, then seems to shift down a gear at last.
Pernod makes her angry usually but today being mad
is far better than being nervous so she orders up
a neat double and wincing sharply she bags it on home.
Half a lager later and she is finally ready to put
those collywobbles ‘out like the Monday night bins’
She rises from the barstool, unsteadily and ungraciously,
then bad-mood’s herself across the struggling road
to the unspectacular Registrar Office were her future
husband and two unknown witnesses are busy a-pacing.