After tea, in the front yard the old man
asks for my hand, the hand of a child.
He wants to show me a magnifying glass
the closest thing he has to a toy,

and I’m bored, though my palm under it
is pink, fantastic. Now he dips
the silvery rim as if he’s fishing air
to trap the sun on newspaper, angling it

closer so it smoulders and takes fire,
and I learn for the first time how to burn.

‘Suntrap’ was published in Suntrap.