I am not young. This is a strange thing. I surprise the mirror, remind myself, I am not young. But I am not convinced. I am young, I say to myself. I argue without saying anything. And then I see someone my age wearing something I might have worn twenty years ago and I think No. I would not wear that now. And I know, then. I am almost persuaded. I walk quickly alongside a young woman and I forget again. I see a woman in the shop window: all that time, germinating. It’s a puzzle. That boy there, leaning against the train door. I would have fancied him, I think, just after I think how nice he looks, how I very nearly fancy him now. I should tie a string around my finger. I forget so much.
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Barbara Marsh is a poet, musician and teacher and winner of the 2015 Troubadour International Poetry Prize. Her collection, To the Boneyard, is published by Eyewear (2013). As a singer/songwriter, she worked primarily in NYC and London, co-forming Anglo-American duo The Dear Janes. Formerly with Geffen Records, they released three albums and toured Europe and the US. She is the author of the first book-length monograph on poet Ruth Stone. The ballet part is true.