Your coffee grows cold on the kitchen table,
which means the universe is dying.
Your dress on the carpet is just a dress,
it has lost all sense of you now.
I open the window, the sky is dark
and the house is also cooling, the garden,
the summer lawn, all of it finding an equilibrium.
I watch an ice cube melt in my wine,
the heat of the Chardonnay passing into the ice.
It means the universe is going to die:
the second law of thermodynamics.
Entropy rising. Only the fridge struggles
to turn things round but even here there’s a
hidden loss. It hums in the corner, the only sound
on a quiet night. Outside, everywhere in the vast
sky stars are cooling, I think of the sun
consuming its fuel, the afternoon that is past,
and your dress that only this morning
was warm to my touch.
from Spanish Fly (Cape, 2001), © Neil Rollinson 2001, used by permission of the author and the publisher.