A Birthday Letter by Zoë Wells


· A Birthday Letter ·

by Zoë Wells


One day I’ll meet you in the streets of south London

Twenty years from now

When all this is long


Said and done, saying how

Strange it is the way time flies.

We’ll get coffee anyhow


In a small café, avoiding eyes

Like you told me to and I always did.

And tucked between piles


Of dirty plates and tables, we’ll say how weird

It is to see each other again,

In London, when we were long done and far rid


Of the pain

That comes with standing in the same room

And outside the rain


Will pitter and patter and our spoons

Will clink in empty coffee cups

And there’s a thousand moons


Between now and then but knowing now then I’ll act up –

Because that’s what I do –

And you’ll tell me to grow up


Because that’s you

And I’ll order another coffee

And you might apologise but who


Can really tell. We

Might talk more, or less, and

Maybe, just maybe


When I walk you’ll ask “Can

I see you again?” And I’ll see

You, pale standing, voice shaking and hands


Clenched together in a sea

Side knot, something

I knew when I was three


From those days spent building

Sandcastles and sand men and sand some-

Things, such strange things


And so long ago, and the memories’ll flood and as they come

I’ll nod and say it’s been a while

But I would like to see you again mum.


But then maybe I’ll just walk into the streets of south London

Zoë is a poet and short story writer currently studying at the University of Warwick. She splits her time between Geneva and Leamington Spa, and can be found at zoewells.com

Feature photo by Alex Thornber 



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