My Very First Date

by Pam Newham

Stopped at a traffic light.

A white van flashes
“Kevin Bates Carpeting”
as it goes by
and I am back
in a dark school hall
on a Friday night
watching a forgettable film
clammy hand
holding
clammy hand.

Then the lights change
and I think: “Wait,
his surname wasn’t Bates”.

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