The Delivery Man

The Delivery Man

When the delivery man called after tea
he let in before him such an easterly,
and he stepped down the hallway so briskly,

and he smiled so flushingly, yet so briefly
and with so little knowledge of us,
and with such freedom from all accretion,

and with such innocence of all connection,
that our spirits flickered to life at once,
saltatorially. We cleared our throats

in greeting, and before we knew where we were
we had reached consensus on the lengthening
of the days, now that spring was here.

Such rustling, such quick society, such self-
forgetting! In his eyes, we were still citizens
of the world, with everything still to play for.

But then, while the smiles were still breaking
on our faces, he was gone. The house closed in fast
behind him and grew warm again, and airless
and secure. And dreaming once more overcame us.

Tom Duddy
(Published in Magma)