KISSING IN HATS

Kissing in hats before they go to war -
the angle of the brims, the tilted faces
the platform's edge, the open carriage door

a hand at waist or shoulder, nothing more
because they never kiss in public places
or kissed in hats until they went to war

and learned to kiss by trains, a kiss to draw
in one all past and possible embraces
by platform's edge, by open carriage door

in buttoned overcoats and hats secure
with pins and little veils, their unclad faces
kissing in hats. And then they went to war

and train and platform stretch for evermore
and all the couples keep appointed places
at platform's edge, at every carriage door

to kiss in black and white, in love, unsure
who took, or not, the last of their embraces
in hats, kissing before they went to war.
O platform's edge. O open carriage door.