Poetic licence: BT has unveiled its new red phone box. There remain 15,000 of the old K6 design on British streets. Often mistaken for loos, they are still an essential part of early courtship rituals.

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The Independent Online
In tea-rose red

The phone box then

Pretty on the green

With its cottage panes

We snogged in there

In our early teens

The tousled blonde

With smudged blue eyes

Who packed her boyfriend in

For me. Press Button B.

They don't come back

The oblong shape

Relieved by curves

Of bird-limed roof

The door was solid. Heavy

With its straps and handle

She phoned her friends

About the scandal.

That heady smell

Of cigarettes

And no regrets. Press Button B

They don't come back

Late afternoon

Mid-autumn. Warm

The directory was torn

The half-term sun

Just she and I

And pennies for the guy

Then back at school

By now alone

She'd packed me in

Another phone. Press Button B

They don't come back