midday on platform 1

There's nothing remarkable
about his appearance —

a bit of piercing
a black hoodie
a tat or two

I fear for her,
as his tongue moves slowly
in out, in out of her mouth
and his pelvis thrusts

and his eyes close
and his beefy fingers knead
at her short shiny skirt

her eyes are wide open
they glaze into nowhere

she leans limp
against a concrete pole
surrounded by his body

pink daisies wilt
on scuffed plastic shoes

a pink backpack droops
from stick thin shoulders

I want to push him away — to say
go find someone your own age — 

the train arrives
he leads her
through the open door

Elizabeth Nicholls (Western Australia)

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