Nightcap by Helen Freeman

Late at night my husband and I
go into the kitchen. We prattle
about this and that: who’s eaten
the most apple pie? What to cook
for the next dinner party – the regular?
Lasagne? And which cat is that
intoning a nocturne outside our door?

We scrutinise the glued pan handle,
contemplate when the milk will boil
and laugh when it spills over as usual.
Angus scoops the malted grains
and I stir in the frothy liquid – or I scoop
and he stirs. We meet to share chunks
of dark chocolate orange and part

to lick fingers and scrape out
the dollops left over at the bottom
of our mugs. While we dry dishes,
hang tea-towels and water thyme,
our chit-chat slows. The stars stretch,
his brow relaxes, my mind slackens
and we drift off like wind-borne leaves.