The ground would not swallow him up.
They were on the second floor.
He took a slow sip from his tea cup.
This couldn't go on for much more.
She rummaged again through her biggest bag,
Then emptied it out on the table.
His Christmas spirit had started to sag.
He pretended to read the wine label.
The day had started so well.
He had lined up all sorts of treats.
He'd awoken her gently with a tinkly bell.
Now he was sucking on awful free sweets.
He'd cooked a good breakfast, with sausage and toast,
Then they'd gone for a walk in the snow.
He was determined to be the most excellent host.
Was it all going swimmingly? No.
Quick description of her:
She would do as a working definition of the word 'sweet'.
Tiny, blonde, cute dimples, high voice.
He, meanwhile, was trying to pull off the feat
Of being a boyfriend like a Rolls Royce.
The waiter, waiting, shifted his weight.
He didn't know where best to look.
She formed one-pound coin piles - so far: eight,
And do you know how long that took?
Was she a 'modern woman'? Perhaps not,
But he'd still played the contemporary game.
They are independent - disrespect them not!
And treat them all exactly the same!
He was not a wealthy sort,
But it didn't matter - she didn't mind.
He made do by giving things thought,
Fared well by just being kind.
His few gifts were all well-chosen and fitting.
He'd carved her name into her toothbrush's handle.
He hid little surprises just where she'd be sitting.
When she shivered he'd warmed her with a great roaring candle.
But this day was his one great splurge of indulgence.
He'd paid for the ice-skating and hire of ice-skates.
He wanted to see her full gleeful effulgence.
(She's found a fiver! This is so tense)
He tried hard not drum his nails on the plates.
He'd paid for the museum, and the cinema, and the funfair.
There was no local zoo, but he'd have paid for that too.
So, Society - was it really so unfair
To ask her to pay for one cheap meal for two?
Now she was checking the inside of her hat,
And every coat pocket, each one by one.
He should pay. He could - in four seconds flat,
Then this would be over. This would be done.
The situation peaked perhaps when the waiter spoke.
"You're a very lucky man, sir."
"Yes I am." He spoke truly. "I am, I am, I know. I am a very lucky man."
He was wishing right then that she didn't look so young for her age.
Did the waiter think he was there with his kid?
He had secret tickets for her first panto on stage.
Oh - no he didn't.
OH YES HE DID!
She paid. They left. They would both see the funny side.
Out onto cool streets, by decorations lit.
More seasonal fun now - only lightly-punctured pride.
It was a perfect day
... Just apart from that bit.