by Lucy Mellor
Hazy sunbeams glide effortlessly through the bay window and seep across the ancient wooden floor. Unashamedly they stream through pure white curtains and gently stir the couple entwined in a large white bed. Slowly coming into the world, comforted by the warm heaviness of being home with no imminent desire to be elsewhere. Lazily they drift and dream, floating somewhere too high to be reached by the mortal world. One of them, he, carefully extracts himself from his still-sleeping lover, and slips into a robe they found in some far-flung corner of the world where only colours and patterns matter. Tiptoeing into the kitchen, he listens to the distinct sounds of early morning as he fills up the copper kettle. Distant birdsong and the occasional footstep of someone embracing the dawn accompany him as he pads outside. He offers rain to the sprawling mass of ivy and flowering plants that have wound themselves around their balcony; his watering can lingering slightly longer over the strawberry plant as he knows it’s her favourite. A faint whistle whispers to him that the kettle has boiled. The misty morning feels clean on his face as he takes the freshly brewed cafetiere and two cups of different sizes and stories out onto the balcony. Closing his eyes, he thinks nothing and feels. The burnt orange cushion protects him from the cold intricate metalwork of their table and two chairs. In time, she awakens and, slipping on one of his shirts, joins him on the balcony. They offer nothing but a morning greeting so as not to scare away the peace which so delicately envelops them. Holding the still-hot cup to her lips, she too closes her eyes and allows early morning’s embrace. There is quiet as they both take a sip. She likes her coffee black now, because he does.