the conquest

Sitting splay-legged

on a dark pavement

still warm from the day’s exertion,

she draws an invisible sword

from the tight inner pocket of her jeans,

tips back her head and

laughs, close-eyed;

this, all re-covered ground

and still echoing with the footfalls

of dragon-drawn chariots;

she has long since

learned the danger

of thinking twice.

Music plays softly overhead,

incongruous;

impersonal and plastic,

soaked up by new brick and sponged

inexpertly into the pores of her bare feet.

One by one worlds pass by:

parents with children, couples in love,

impregnable youths.

They glance and turn,

watching without seeing;

unaware.

Her mind, a thousand miles away,

kicking the shins of impossibility

with those calloused feet,

unwinding threads through a maze

and gazing skyward,

always skyward.