Dotted about, they cling to one another
like survivors from a shipwreck,
shiny and new as the morning.
Shaky from first attempts at ironing
their independence is eggshell frail.
Early evenings, watch them snake
the pavements on route-march pub crawls,
terrified of that one indiscretion
which earns them a nickname or
tattoos a campus anecdote.
Studies will prove peripheral
for three or four years of this cakewalk.
They choke back their homesickness,
fledge into themselves day by day.
Ben Banyard lives in Portishead, near Bristol, UK. He’s the author of a pamphlet, Communing (Indigo Dreams, 2016) and a full collection, We Are All Lucky (Indigo Dreams, 2018). He blogs and posts mixtapes at https://benbanyard.wordpress.com.