Hotmail

Hotmail

Upstairs in the post-offce
at the bottom of Belfast High Street
a woman hands out pound coins
for thirty minutes online
and a reguar cappucino.
Her username’s ‘Ruby’.
Her password’s ‘Daffodil1′.

The egg-timer twirls
after she logs on to Internet Explorer
for an infuriating amount of time.
If her husband had been with her
he’d have walked out by now
with a strop on but she’s alone.

In precisely eleven minutes time
her fingers will be shaking .
She’ll press wrong numbers
on her mobile; try to send a text but fail.
She won’t be timed out
and will trawl her inbox
and find it tucked away in Junk.
You’re virtual friends, go play,
her husband would have said
but he’s not here.

It’s sorted’, and she opens up
All the e-mail says is:
Here it is. Expect you soon.
a house along the Antrim coast,
a drab wee wet thing in the rain.
It looks like home.

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