At your friend’s wedding,

you stand next

to your ex-wife.

It is raining, and the rain

softens the world

so it bends and fades and replicates


like ruined


She is crying, your ex-


with her arms crossed

round her waist

in her wet


her shoulders shaking.

Years ago, you slept three nights

in a house that shook

like fever

and the bus went up the hill

outside the door

and her skin

shone like lost lanterns, bare and pale,

in the glow of the dim headlights.

You shift your hand

on the umbrella

that you brought

so that it shields her slightly