What are you reading? he asks.
I take in the cactus stubble on his chin.
his Nike tick eyebrows, the way the curls
above his ears can’t resist resting on them,
his drainpipe skinny black jeans,
the mole on his cheek that looks
like a comma, the hairline that tells
me everything I want to know.
Nothing, I lie.
© Carl Burkitt 2023