Philip Gross Poems
The Key to the Kingdom
It's not exile, homes and families behind
us, where we meet. It happens anywhere,
now: a stateless
state of no name, quietly seceding
from the crumbling empires round us,
without stamps or Eurovision entries.
No-one does it with a rough guide in a week.
You inhabit it
or nothing. Like this: in a pavement cafe
you blink and you seem to surprise them,
the crowd, all its separate faces at once,
coming out of solution like crystals,
like a rush of starlings
or the breeze that lifts the canvas awning
now and dents your cappuccino froth...