Round and slow moving, her mind is elsewhere.
Flurrying maybes burn holes in her attention,
fear lends thorns to her glances.
Still she pushes on through the Christmas shoppers
a silent knight with shopping trolley steed,
a quixotic queen saving bottles, cans and treasure.
Shrill clusters of family life contend for toys
and peace of mind. Parents match her startled
stare as they sift the mental clatter for the
right mix of food and presents. Children call
like small birds; mouths and eyes all consuming.
The yellow dog waits outside the fish shop, also hopeful.

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