Power Cut

by Victoria Gatehouse

You strike the first match –
the room lurches
from black to indistinct

before colour reasserts itself
in ambers and golds.

Walls and ceilings shift and dip,
all down the street
windows flickering,

half the valley out by the look of it
and your face, as you reach

for the corkscrew, is like it was
before the lines crept in
all the rough edges blurring –

we’re adrift, you and I
in aureoles of light, and then

the splutter and fizz
of overhead strips, the glare
of electricals back on again

your fingers sliding from mine
to nip out all the little flames.