Poetry at Sangam



AT THE HOP by George Szirtes

In the school hall there are dividing lines
between girls and boys and loners and the rest.
though all are loners, each one underdressed,
each of the shadow that the light defines.

Romance in the suburbs is a drink away
from halls like this, beyond the football pitch,
beyond the last estate, in the last ditch
where lust and the imagination stray.

Not quite lust though, more the pressing sense
of being alone in a world of loners, lost
to the conversation, left to count the cost
of such unending pain. The present tense
ticks over in the car park. The frail kiss
of wind and moonlight spells an end to this.