The wind at my back

The wind was in my face
and the sea breeze bore the scents of salt and seaweed,
the sand gave, wet beneath our feet - 
for a moment a shaft of light lanced the small town
and Scottish stones were lit to rose.

Your arm was strong around me as we walked
over cobbles and pebbles, and we climbed the
tower spiral, footsteps echoing.  Our lungs were
gusted at the top, our eyes roaming roof-tiles and steeples.
Your arm held your small digital camera: and we were

fixed in place.  I gaze at you now, and know
the feel of your hair in my fingers, its coarse
thickness and strength, its weight, your smooth
freckles beneath my palm, the warmth of your
living breath, your face darkening above me.

Our days were measured in jewelled minutes
glittering, and we strung them, priceless, about
our necks.  Not far apart, our bodies, as the minutes
clicked, and our hands held more than skin.  We are
kin now, sewn by memory and time, by the days we

lived here in this place before we were one.  I
watched you as you
slowly crossed the road, and turned, your eyes
unmoving through the glass, holding mine, as I
sat quiet and waited for the bus to leave.

I sit now, beside an open window, cool March air
sifting my skin.  The screen says 15:23 and I wonder
how many miles separate us as the crow flies.  I
picture you in your room, this same light falling
gently on your town: I am bound even though

there are no ties; but I know the route from here
to there - it is not long - and your upturned hand
raised in farewell said no goodbye: it was parley
and exchange: that we will barter our time till
I arrive to breathe your air and drink your liquid eyes.
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