The Stickerhttps://i0.wp.com/barrenmagazine.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/IMG_20190327_1847231.jpg?fit=1920%2C1440&ssl=119201440Iain TwiddyIain Twiddyhttps://i0.wp.com/barrenmagazine.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/iaintwiddy.jpg?fit=96%2C96&ssl=1
He said Let’s put a sticker on the streetlight —
one of the ’85 ones no one would swap,
the streetlight that stood right by the silver birch,
pale as a sinking stone. It would be funny,
plus it would leave a shadow on the pavement.
So he climbed up and I climbed up just under,
in case he fell. And he stretched out and smeared it
barely at the edge. It didn’t really stick;
it wrinkled on the ridges, but it was still
a secret, and I promised not to tell.
Well, I guess it must have got nibbled away,
even there, on the underside of the rain;
it must have dripped with the catkins, or shriveled
in the wind and sun, unpeeling like a leaf.
Either way, no one ever stopped to look up,
and maybe even he doesn’t remember;
so it doesn’t matter that I’m letting this slip,
after looking up in a dark park in Kyōto,
glimpsing him leaning out through the thin silver boughs,
with the snow frittering down, as if from his glow.