You have to let them go and hope for the best


The night before you left for India,
we got the movie time wrong.

We strolled arm in arm through the city
as if we were the stars

in our own film.
On the bus home, the driver

issued me two child tickets,
and a young Italian man gesticulated

and spoke of blue cheese.


After you left,
I washed your five white work shirts.


Broken glass was spread over the carpet 
from the party the night before.

I looked out,
and saw smoke – thick, fluid clouds of it.

An Indian woman was running 
from here to there hysterically –

collapsing into the arms
of onlookers.


On a Tuesday,
I found myself upstairs in the sun.

You rang. 
You’d been in a crash.

I looked out.
Down the road, at the bus-stop,

a pair of figures danced slowly 
in perfect unison –

stepping forward
and stepping back.


Emily Dobson has just completed an MA in creative writing at Victoria and is the winner of the Adam Foundation Prize for 2004. She has been published in various journals and lives in Wellington.