John Son

The Tea House

Let’s take things lightly.
The lyric nailed to the door –
softly the crystals falling on seventeenth street
do their dance and die and are gone.
Why not.
Our days can be Broadway singalongs.

The airy snap of refrigerated chocolate,
the gossiping of earl grey.
Step outside for a minute, let’s not
leave the discussion open-ended.

“It all works itself out in the end, darling.”
Talks of dusty country roads and dead wives’ poetry.
Regard the petunias and lemongrass,
the sun’s reflection deep in the duck pond
and such else.
It’s all a matter of belonging.

The top shelf is strictly a weekend pursuit.
Little straight-legged jumps
to reach the sugar packet.
Self-preservation is a gift granted unto oneself
as soon as one walks in through the door.

The teacups are a metaphor.
“If only they were so lucky.”

By five we have slithered onto the carpet,
arms outstretched, glasses upright.
“There’s just no civility these days.”

A quiet hour.
Observe her taking a grape,
squashing it between her thumb and finger.
Watch the juice as it runs down her hand,
her wrist, her pudgy forearm.


John Son is a student from London, currently based in Winchester, Hampshire. He has almost finished studying his degree in Creative Writing, and worries greatly about what the future holds. His poetry has previously appeared in the online journal Snapdragon, as well as the Splendid Fred Lung Party series of podcasts.

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