The Radiator Wall

This one I’ll leave till last,
postponing the problems – how
the wallpaper will come round the corner
and the principal fern in the pattern
continues to meet the ceiling,
the length staying true to the plumb.
Then the trick of guiding it down
into darkness so as not to snag
and easing it out without tearing,
fretting the paste holds out.
Wet fingers tense on the sheers
to gauge that cut at the skirting
which somebody’s bound to notice.
Even if I shift my chair,
face the opposite way during tea breaks,
I can’t not think of that wall.