Our love it lives at 6.3 degrees.
I stooped to measure it inside a dream.
A meager distance. Not the moon in apogee.
Still, from Earth it rises at a tilt unseen.
The sun a decade older than before
first words (on the second-hand-furniture
warehouse concrete floor in BT4),
our love some saw—still see—as forfeiture.
Love—it is not love until it’s tested.
So wrote Kierkegaard. Or sang that icon,
Lady Gaga. Hills already crested,
no sudden stops—our tires revolving on
the long canal towpath through Portadown
& up to where we are, so startlingly set down.
Note: The last three words of “Cycle Route 9” are taken from Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek (HarperPerennial, 1998).