P.W. Bridgman


A man sat at a table
turns in his seat,
the better to face a window, 
   the better to 
      face away.

Kindly women sat round the table 
next him quietly discuss their knitting 
and a wayward granddaughter
   named Kim.

The man’s writing has been paused:
   an incoming text, 
      a loss.

Slowly he removes
   his ear buds, 
      his glasses.

Slowly the window before him

Slowly he reaches for a stray napkin,
   left over from lunch.

Suddenly the conversation next him
   falls silent.

* The name of dear friends’ Cavalier King Charles Spaniel who recently died.

P.W. Bridgman’s third and fourth books—Idiolect (poetry) and The Four-Faced Liar (short fiction)—were published in 2021 by Ekstasis Editions. His writing has appeared in, among others, The Moth MagazineThe Glasgow Review of BooksThe Mulberry Fork ReviewThe Honest UlstermanThe Galway ReviewLitro UKLitro NYThe High WindowThe MaynardThe Antigonish Review and Grain.